Dolly Parton has never forgotten where she came from, which is why she tries to give back to the world in any way she can.
Although Parton's total sales of singles, albums, hits collections, and digital downloads have now reached over 100 million worldwide, the "Jolene" singer had to come a long way to achieve such success.
Parton was raised in poverty in the mountains of East Tennessee, making it a challenge for children like her to receive a proper education. She speaks about her childhood experiences in an interview with Southern Living Magazine:
"A lot of my own relatives didn’t get to go to school because we were mountain people. You have to get out and work and help feed the family. My own dad couldn’t read and write."
Now that Parton is a country legend, she uses her success to help children in situations similar to what she experienced growing up.
One way that Parton gives back to the community is through her Imagination Library, which provides free books to children up to age five.
But beyond providing books to the children, Parton is actively involved in making the library a truly educational experience for the children that visit.
Parton started working with the publishers of the books that the library receives so that she can write a song based off of each book. The staff at the Imagination Library then writes a play centered around Parton's song.
After writing so many songs for the Imagination Library over the years, Parton decided to put together a children's album of 12 songs based on the books in the library. The album's first single, "I Believe In You" has already been made available to listen to, with the other 11 songs being available for purchase soon.
All of the proceeds from Parton's new album will be donated to the Dollywood Foundation, the organization that oversees the Imagination Library.
Parton recognizes that her involvement with the Imagination Library has impacted many lives.
“That’s one of the things I’m proudest of, of anything I’ve ever done,” Parton says about Imagination Library during her Southern Living interview. “You can’t educate enough children."
Listen to Parton's new single "I Believe In You" from her upcoming children's album for the Imagination Library.
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