Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library Hits Notable Milestone — 200 Million Books Sent to Children (So Far!)

As part of the celebration, those enrolled in the program could win an opportunity to chat with the singer

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library program is marking a special milestone by giving the opportunity to seven lucky families to chat with the legend herself.

Launched by the singer in 1995, the Imagination Library has so far gifted 200 million books worldwide since its founding. To celebrate the occasion, seven Dolly bookmarks will be randomly hidden inside Imagination Library books gifted during September, which is International Literacy Month, to children/families currently enrolled in the program, according to a news release.

“I know there are children in communities around the world with big dreams and the seeds of these dreams are often found in books,” said Parton in a statement. “It’s been one of my greatest gifts in life to help instill a love of reading through my Imagination Library. Reaching 200 million books worldwide is a major milestone that I’m so very proud of, and I want to thank all of our local program partners, funders and supporters from the bottom of my heart. But we’re just getting warmed up, we have so much more to do! Together, we can inspire even more children to dream more, learn more, care more and be more.”

According to its website, the Imagination Library, a flagship program of the Dollywood Foundation, mails over 2 million free age-appropriate books each month to enrolled children from birth to age five. Those who are in the program by July 13, 2023, will be eligible to participate in the 200 Million Reasons to Celebrate campaign.

  Ana Gasteyer, Miley Cyrus & More Join New Dolly Parton Musical Film DOLLY PARTON'S MOUNTAIN MAGIC CHRISTMAS

Related: Dolly Parton on Importance of Reading to Children: 'These Are the Memories That Last Forever'

Among the rewards for those seven lucky families who find the special Dolly bookmarks in their Imagination Library books include a video chat with Parton, a personalized signed letter, and autographed picture, and four Dollywood Theme Park tickets.

Additionally, the Dollywood Foundation will donate $2,000 on behalf of the child to their Local Imagination Library Partner in their community “as a thank you to who Dolly calls the true heroes of her program,” per the news release.

In a 2018 PEOPLE interview, Parton said that the Imagination Library was inspired by her father’s inability to read and write.

“He was a country boy with a bunch of kids,” she said, “and he had to work instead of going to school when he was a little boy, and so he never had the chance to get an education,” adding that “it seemed to really bother him a lot and I thought, ‘Well, what can I do for my precious dad?’ ‘Cause he was the greatest daddy in the world and one of the smartest people I’d ever known.”

“So I said, ‘Dad, why don’t we put together a little program where we give children books from the time they’re born, once a month, until they start school?’” Parton explained. “That way, they can learn to read, love books. If you can read, you can kinda self-educate.”

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE’s free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

  Dolly Parton Reveals Her Thoughts on Billy Ray Cyrus’ New Fiancée, Firerose

Not only is the singer an advocate for literacy, but she has also written children’s books herself. Her most recent title is Billy the Kid Makes It Big, which was published in April. It follows Billy the Kid, a dog who loves barking to the beat of country music and wants to make it big as a country music star in Nashville.

“I am so proud to bring this book and the message it conveys to life,” Parton told PEOPLE in a statement at the time. “Years back I wrote a song ‘Makin’ Fun Ain’t Funny’ for my children’s album I Believe In You. I wanted kids to understand how harmful bullying can be to someone.”

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.