Dolly Parton’s telethon raises $9M for wildfire victims; fund distribution starts today

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PIGEON FORGE , Tenn. (WATE) – Families who lost everything in the Gatlinburg and Sevier County fires will begin receiving checks Thursday from Dolly Parton’s My People Fund.

RELATED: Dolly Parton’s foundation to give $1,000 per month to families who lost everything in fire

Eligible families can receive $1,000 per month for up to six months. Families, whether they own or rent, who lost their primary residence in the wildfires are eligible.

Applicants are urged to pre-apply online. County officials are using the U.S. Geological Survey of the damage along with cross-references of official documents.CLICK HERE FOR FULL COVERAGE OF THE GATLINBURG WILDFIRE

Starting Thursday, those with last names beginning with the letters A through F will be able to report to the CARE MORE Assistance Center inside the LeConte Event Center, 2986 Teaster Lane, in Pigeon Forge. Those with last names beginning with G through L can report on Friday, M through R on Monday and S through Z on Tuesday.

Dolly Parton performs at her telethon (WATE)

The Dollywood Foundation encourages only the heads of households report on the day that correlates with their last name and to bring photo ID. More than 900 families have applied so far with more expected.More online:Apply for the My People Fund

Officials say the funds will not run out. Parton raised nearly $9 million for the My People Fund during a three-hour telethon Tuesday night. Officials expect that number to grow as the telethon is repeated over the next several days.

Donations can still be made here.

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