'I Fight Illiteracy For My Father': Dolly Parton Reveals Why She Started Her Literacy Program

Date March 1, 2018

Dolly Parton is not only an award-winning singer but also a philanthropist and advocate of literacy. Back in 1995, she started a program, the Imagination Library, to donate millions of books to children in different countries. And on February 27, she marked a milestone by giving her 100 millionth book to the Library of Congress.

Local children had an opportunity to attend the event and listen to Dolly reading the book "Coat of Many Colors." As the singer says, this book reminds her of her mom and daddy. In fact, her family is the reason Parton even started her book-giving literacy program.

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Talking about her dad

It turns out that the Imagination Library is a tribute to the star’s father. He was a smart and hardworking man, but he never had a chance to learn how to write or read. When she started the program, her dad got involved in it, helping his daughter to distribute books in their country.

My daddy couldn't read and write and that always troubled him and bothered him so I wanted to do something special for him.

Now, Imagination Library operates not only in the United States but also in Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom. To date, there is almost a million of kids registered under it, regardless of their financial background. Dolly is happy that her dad lived long enough to see the success of the program.

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Sadly, Robert Lee Parton died in 2003 at 79, but his talented daughter definitely made him proud.

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Dolly Parton Art