The country music icon and host of Food Network’s “Trisha’s Southern Kitchen” raised the donations for her own animal charity, “Dottie’s Yard Fund,” on TalkShopLive, a live social-shopping network. The donations will help to offer care and treatment to shelter pets and Yearwood has said she plans to match up to $10,000 of the raised funds herself.
The donations were collected as part of the Betty White Challenge, which encouraged people to donate at least $5 to their local animal shelter on Jan. 17, which would have been White’s 100th birthday. The “Golden Girls” star died on Dec. 31, 2021.
After raising a staggering amount in about 15 minutes, Yearwood continued to see donations rolling into her charity thanks to the momentum generated by the social media challenge.
The singer tweeted that they were well over the $30,000 mark by that evening!
“I’m blown away!” Yearwood tweeted, “… but let’s keep this love flowing!”
I’m blown away! We’ve already reached our goal of $30,000+, but let’s keep this love flowing!! Thank you all so much!! xo 🐾 #BettyWhiteChallenge
Donate here: https://t.co/0CVfdX6dZc
— Trisha Yearwood (@trishayearwood) January 18, 2022
It was a fitting tribute to the late “Golden Girls” star, who loved animals and worked hard for many charitable organizations throughout her life. She even turned down a role in the Academy Award-nominated 1997 film, “As Good As It Gets,” because it depicted animal abuse comedically in one scene.
“They had this puppy dog, this adorable puppy, that at one point they dropped down a laundry chute. It landed on a pile of laundry in the story line, and I turned down the role,” White told Smithsonian Magazine in 2012. “There are a lot of people in apartments who would think that was a solution. It would either be funny to do that or it would be a solution to a barking neighbor or something like that. It certainly wouldn’t always have a happy ending. So I said as long as that scene was in the film, I wouldn’t do it.”
White would undoubtedly have been proud to see donations being given to animal shelters around the country in her honor, as she lived her life advocating for the better treatment of animals, even hosting a television show in the 1970s called “Betty White’s Pet Set,” which saw celebrities and their pets as her guests.
“Animals are near and dear to my heart, and I’ve devoted my life to trying to improve their lives,” White is credited as saying.
White’s friends are certain that the donations are beyond anything the Hollywood legend could have imagined, and that it would have filled her with so much joy to know that another big push to help shelter pets would be part of her legacy.
“The outpouring of love, the amazing amount of donations being given to all types of animal organizations is such a tribute to how Betty lived her life,” White’s friend and agent, Jeff Witjas, told People. “As Betty would say, ‘Thank you from the bottom of my heart.'”