Taylor Swift is one of the world's most successful musicians. She's had more than 185 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart, including 40 top-ten hits. To date, she's sold more than 200 million albums.
While Swift is famous for her music career, she also makes a point of giving back. There have been many Taylor Swift charity projects over the years, including work with major charities and small-scale donations. Read on to learn what Taylor Swift does for charity.
The Charities That Taylor Swift Works With
Taylor Swift regularly works with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, an organization that fulfills the wishes of children with serious illnesses. She's visited sick children at hospitals across the country, including the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
Swift is also involved with the V Foundation for Pediatric Cancer Research. She donated proceeds from "Ronan," a charity single about a young boy with neuroblastoma, to the organization. She also performed the song as part of the Stand Up to Cancer telethon in 2012.
Another organization that Swift has partnered with is UNICEF. She's been involved with their Tap Project Initiative, which auctions off bottled water from the homes of celebrities. The program has raised over $2.5 million for people around the world that don't have access to clean drinking water.
Swift has been a strong advocate for organizations that support sexual assault survivors. She has donated money to Rape, Abuse & Incest Network (RAINN) and to the Joyful Heart Foundation, which supports survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse.
In addition to these charities, Swift has worked with Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), Habitat for Humanity, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, and numerous other charities. While she has partnered with several of these charities, the singer-songwriter is also known for making large charitable donations.
Swift has also encouraged her fans to support charities. While Swift has asked fans to make donations to charitable organizations, she has also suggested that people find other ways to get involved. For example, she's asked her fans to participate in Global Youth Service Day, a coordinated volunteer event.
Giving Back to Her Community
Before Swift became a star, she lived in Pennsylvania, and she has made a point of donating to programs in her home state. For example, in 2011, she donated more than $70,000 worth of books to the Reading Public Library in Reading, Pennsylvania. In total, she donated over 6,000 books.
At age 14, Swift moved to Nashville to start her music career. Unsurprisingly, she's made many donations to organizations in Nashville over the years. In 2014, when she heard that the Nashville Symphony might have to close its doors, she presented them with a $100,000 donation.
When Swift heard that her former high school, Hendersonville High School in Hendersonville, TN, needed money to refurbish its auditorium, she stepped in to help. She gave the school $75,000. Other organizations in the Nashville area that have received donations from Swift include Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police and the local St. Jude's hospital.
Swift has also made some massive donations to the Country Music Hall of Fame. In 2012, she pledged $4 million to the organization so that they could provide music programs for local children. Thanks to her donation, the Taylor Swift Education Center was opened in 2014.
Massive Donation when Tornadoes Struck
When Nashville and surrounding areas were struck by tornadoes, Swift gave a whopping $1 million to disaster relief efforts. She made her donation to the Middle Tennessee Emergency Response Fund and encouraged her fans to donate as well.
"Nashville is my home," Swift told her fans in a video she shared on Instagram. "The fact that so many people have lost their homes and so much more is devastating."
Thanks to Swift's career, she's had the opportunity to live in many areas, and she's continued to make donations to the communities that she's a part of. For example, when she moved to New York City in 2015, she donated $50,000 to the city's public schools. She also promised that future royalties from her song "Welcome to New York" would go to the school system.
The songstress has even donated to communities that her friends and family are a part of. Swift's mother, Andrea Finlay Swift, went to the University of Houston in Texas. When Houston was devastated by Hurricane Harvey, she made a large donation to the Houston Food Bank in her mother's name.
How Taylor Swift Helps Her Fans
While there are many celebrities that donate to charity, Swift has also made an effort to give back to her fans directly. In 2014, she hosted an event called "Swiftmas," in which she sent personalized gifts to fans across the globe. The lucky fans were sent packages that included a wide range of gifts.
These packages included a variety of items that ranged from hand-selected gifts to some of Taylor's personal belongings. Other gifts included Polaroid cameras, designer scarves, and hundreds of dollars worth of gift cards. One of the recipients, a college graduate named Rebekah, received nearly $2,000 to help pay off her student loans.
When Swift learned that one of her young fans, an eight-year-old boy named Jacob Hill, needed a service dog, she gave him $10,000. After Reid received his dog, she invited him to bring his dog and family to her show at Houston's NRG Stadium. The boy and his family even had the chance to hang out with Swift backstage.
Also Contributes to GoFundMe
Swift regularly donates to GoFundMe pages so that she can help fans in need. In 2019, she gave $10,000 to help a young fan with cancer cover her medical expenses. When she made her donation, she also left a personalized note to show her support.
While Swift has used GoFundMe to support her fans, she's donated to other GoFundMe pages as well. When Swift read an article in the Washington Post about families that were struggling to cover expenses, she was determined to help. She made $13,000 donations to the two women spotlighted in the article, Shelbie Selewski and Nikki Cornwell.
"No one should have to feel the kind of stress that's been put on you," said Taylor in one of her donation messages. "I hope you and your beautiful family have a great holiday season."
Vickie Quarles, a mother of five who lost her husband to COVID-19, made a GoFundMe page asking for $50,000 to cover her family's expenses. When Swift saw the page, she donated the full $50,000 that the woman was asking for. Since Swift's GoFundMe donations are public, they frequently lead to a surge in donations for the people she helps.
During the COVID-19 crisis, Swift also made direct donations to several fans that were in need. These fans reported receiving personalized messages and "stimulus checks" from Swift. While Swift did not announce these donations publicly, reports from fans suggest that she donated thousands.
Taylor Swift has made a career out of performing, so it should be no surprise that she has used her talents to help charities. She's been a part of several relief concerts and has even hosted fundraising events of her own!
In 2009, Australia was struck by bushfires and a series of floods. Several Australians organized the Sydney Sound Relief Concert to raise money for disaster relief. The event raised more than $3.3 million, which it gave to the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal and the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal.
Swift was one of several stars that participated in the event. When she took the stage, she performed some of her biggest hits, like "Love Story" and "You Belong With Me." Other performers at the event included Coldplay and Olivia-Newton John.
In 2011, when Swift was preparing for her Speak Now tour, several southeastern states were struck by deadly tornadoes. To raise money for relief efforts, Swift opened up her dress rehearsal to fans, calling it the Speak Now Help Now concert. All proceeds from the event were donated to relief efforts, and Swift raised more than $750,000 in total.
Swift was also a part of the One World: Together At Home benefit concert in 2020. The concert, which was broadcast on television stations worldwide, raised money for the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. At the show, she performed her song "Soon You'll Get Better."
Even though many Taylor Swift charity donations are private, the singer has been publicly recognized for her philanthropic efforts. In 2012, she received The Big Help Award at the Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Awards, which was presented by Michelle Obama. Swift also topped the DoSomething "Gone Good" list in 2015, which highlights charitable donations from celebrities.
It's clear that charity is important to Swift, and it's likely that she will continue to work with many organizations in the future. From donations to major charities to personal gifts to fans, Swift is always looking for ways to give back to the people and communities that have made her a star.
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Written by Dana Hanson
Read more posts by Dana Hanson