By now, it’s well-known that Dolly Parton is representative of the best of humankind.
But in a clip from the Kelly Clarkson Show, fans have been left in floods of tears as Dolly was surprised with a real-life example of just how much her work with the Imagination Library helps people.
Since launching in 1995, Dolly’s Imagination Library has given away over 200 million books to children around the world.
Dolly set up the initiative to honor her father, a man who she greatly admired but who she felt missed out on certain opportunities because he was never taught to read or write.
In promoting equity with literacy, Dolly Parton has become “the book lady” – giving hundreds of thousands of children a free book every month.
But proving just how deeply important the work of the charity is, Dolly met with a young blind girl who learnt Braille literacy through the Imagination Library.
Rosie was “medically fragile” and was blind when she came into the life of a woman named Liz. Liz and her husband adopted the young baby and have raised her as she grew from strength to strength.
Liz explains that, despite doctors fearing Rosie might not survive, let alone learn to walk or talk, they quickly discovered Rosie was a fighter.
She started to react well to music, and, around the same time, they started receiving Braille books from the Imagination Library. Because Rosie was exposed to Braille at such a young age through Dolly’s Imagination Library, she was able to beat the odds – as less than 10% of blind children get the chance to become Braille literate.
Rosie being exposed to Braille books has helped her develop beyond her years, with her teachers now thinking she may be gifted. She was even reading and writing Braille before children without visual impairments learn to read and write print.
As Dolly is told this story by Rosie’s mom, she bursts into applause but Liz is quick to point out that it was thanks to the charitable acts of people like Dolly that her daughter was given a fairer shot in life.
Liz describes Rosie’s love of the song Amazing Grace. And even though the lyrics sing, “I once was blind but now I see”, Liz explains, “My daughter does see. She’s gonna see the world through the love and the generosity of people like you Dolly, who stands in all these gaps we have.”
If that wasn’t enough to have you reaching for the Kleenex, Rosie is then brought out to meet Dolly and Kelly.
Dolly immediately gravitates towards the young girl and introduces herself as “the book lady” and that she’s “so proud” of her.
Rosie then asks Kelly and Dolly to sing her favorite song to her, Amazing Grace, which they do, beautifully. Dolly holds Rosie’s hand as they serenade her with the hymn, as Rosie shuffles closer to Dolly throughout the clip.
Unsurprisingly, the moment has moved people to tears. “When Dolly took the young girls hand and held it to her face I burst out crying. It was such a sweet gesture”, one commenter wrote.
“Dolly is a national treasure,” another added.
One hilariously pointed out that Rosie did what anyone would do in her position – demand a duet from two of music’s biggest names.
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Jack Slater is not the Last Action Hero, but that's what comes up first when you Google him. Preferring a much more sedentary life, Jack gets his thrills by covering news, entertainment, celebrity, film and culture for woman&home, and other digital publications.
Having written for various print and online publications—ranging from national syndicates to niche magazines—Jack has written about nearly everything there is to write about, covering LGBTQ+ news, celebrity features, TV and film scoops, reviewing the latest theatre shows lighting up London’s West End and the most pressing of SEO based stories.
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