Dolly Parton has donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in support of pediatric infectious disease research.
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This is Parton’s second large donation to the medical center in just over two years. In April 2020, the Country superstar donated $1 million in support of research to help fight COVID-19.
Dolly’s recent donation will aid Vanderbilt’s Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases in its efforts to understand and fight infectious disease in children.
“I love all children,” Dolly said in a statement. “No child should ever have to suffer, and I’m willing to do my part to try and keep as many of them as I can as healthy and safe as possible.”
Dolly knows the importance of supporting the diagnosed youth all too well as her niece, Hannah Dennison, was treated for leukemia as a child. Both Parton and Dennison were honored with a butterfly garden at Vanderbilt’s Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital following a large donation from Parton in honor of Hannah in 2018.
“Dolly’s previous support to infectious disease research, and also our pediatric cancer program, has already saved countless lives,” said Jeff Balser, MD, PhD, President and CEO of VUMC and Dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. “This new gift will bolster our defenses against future threats to the safety of this region and society as a whole. It speaks volumes about her passion for people, and we couldn’t be more thankful.”