Taylor Swift has once again made a significant donation for a great cause. The 26-year-old pop star donated $100,000 to the Dolly Parton fire fund to assist families who were affected by the devastating Smokey Mountain wildfires, according to Entertainment Tonight. Swift’s donation matched the Academy of Country Music’s donation for a combined total of $200,000 in advance of the forthcoming Smokey Mountain Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund telethon which is set to air next Tuesday.
Dolly Parton expressed her pride in Swift for sticking to her dreams.
“I think that little Taylor Swift has just done amazing… She knew exactly who she was, she had her dream, and she stuck with it. That’s what you gotta do. I’m just so proud of her.”
In a statement to Entertainment Tonight, Tiffany Moon, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of the academy shared the company’s appreciation for Taylor Swift’s donation.
“The Academy and ACM Lifting Lives are honored to contribute in a meaningful way to Dolly’s heroic efforts to help the people of her hometown – and when Taylor heard what we were planning, she offered to match our gift, which gives it that much more impact… We are so grateful to Taylor for her support to the Academy’s charitable efforts through the years, and for helping us and Dolly Parton assist families in need at a time of crisis.”
Proceeds from the telethon will benefit the Dollywood Foundation, My People Fund which was established by Parton this week to assist fire victims in Tennessee. The My People Fund will also provide $1,000 per month to Sevier County families whose homes are uninhabitable or destroyed as a result of the recent fire, according to Entertainment Tonight.
Kenny Chesney and the Country Music Association are contributing $250,000 each, which totals $500,000 in donations towards wildfire relief efforts, according to People.
The country pop princess is no stranger to making major donations to help those in need.
Taylor Swift opened her wallet and handed over $250,000 to singer Kesha as she battled Sony music producer, Dr. Luke, in court. In 2014, Kesha filed a lawsuit against Dr. Luke, born Lukasz Sebastian Gottwald, for sexually, physically, verbally, and emotionally abusing her over the course of a decade. Kesha asked to be released from her Sony contract, but her request was ultimately denied. The 43-year-old music producer not only denied all claims, but is currently countersuing Kesha for breach of contract and defamation, according to People.
I didn’t rape Kesha and I have never had sex with her. Kesha and I were friends for many years and she was like my little sister.— Dr. Luke Doctor Luke (@TheDoctorLuke) February 22, 2016
According to CNN, Swift also donated $1 million toward Louisiana flood relief efforts after torrential rains displaced 20,000 residents and left at least 11 people dead.
Swift recently contributed to one supporter’s funeral expenses. The “Blank Space” singer has made numerous donations through GoFundMe. According to International Business Times, Swift’s massive GoFundMe donations have changed the way GoFundMe does business.
In July of 2015, Swift single-handedly changed the platform by giving $50,000 to an 11-year-old fan who was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia. The maximum limit allowed for the website’s donations was $5,000. Donations exceeding more than $1,000 or $2,000 were considered rare.
“[Taylor Swift] came in and wanted to donate $50,000, and our system at the time wasn’t built for that, so she actually made multiple donations that totaled $50,000 and once she did that, we fixed the system and didn’t limit the amount of money that a donor could leave on the platform. She actually changed the way that we do business.”
How can Swift many such generous donations? Well, $170 million was added to Taylor Swift’s net worth in 2016 alone.
Earlier this year, Taylor dominated Forbes 2016’s list of highest-paid women in music. Although it has been two years since her last album, Swift earned $170 million between June, 2015, and June, 2016. This placed her ahead of Beyonce and Adele on Forbes’ 2016 list. A huge chunk of the cash came from her North American 1989 Tour, which grossed $200 million alone.
Taylor shattered the Rolling Stones’ record with her North American tour numbers. The “Welcome To New York” singer has padded her total net worth by endorsing brands like Keds, Diet Coke, and Apple. Entertainment attorney Lori Landew of Fox Rothschild discussed Taylor’s appeal. Swift has officially dethroned the former highest-paid woman in music, Katy Perry.
“She has been building her fan base for years, and that fan base crosses multiple market segments… It’s this ability to appeal to younger and older audiences, and those in between, that makes Taylor such a sure bet with both concert promoters and brands who want to affiliate with her and with the community she has cultivated.”
The Smokey Mountain Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund will feature a lineup of country music stars including Reba McEntire, Alison Krauss, Chris Stapleton, Kenny Rogers, and more. The telethon is set to air on December 13 at 8 p.m. EST on Great American Country.
[Featured Image by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images]