Dolly Parton has donated $1 million to a children's hospital.

The 71-year-old singer recently visited the Vanderbilt University Children's Hospital, in Nashville, to promote her new album 'I Believe In You' - her first album written exclusively for children - and during her visit she announced her generous donation to the hospital.

The money was donated in honour of her niece Hannah - who was successfully treated for leukaemia at the hospital, her sister Rachel, Hannah's dad Richard and her own physician Dr. Naji Abumrad.

Dolly told the BBC: ''I love children. I've always been involved in one way or another with children's charities or with children in general, because I love little kids. I'm from a big family of children.''

As well as donating the money to the hospital, Dolly is also head the Imagination Library, a non-profit organisation that helps promote early childhood literacy by giving age-appropriate books to children to read.

Dolly - who has had a number of hit songs including 'Jolene', 'Hard Candy Christmas' and 'I Will Always Love You' - was born in rural Tennessee and was the fourth of 12 children for Avie Lee Caroline and Robert Lee Parton Sr.

Dolly grew up impoverished and she admits her parents' advice to financial matters has shaped her attitude to money throughout her entire life.

She said: ''It's hard for me to spend money on tonnes of stuff because I'm going to look the same, no matter what I wear. If I wear diamonds I'm still going to look like a rhinestone. Being brought up poor means I don't take things for granted, and no matter how much money I make, I'll always count my blessing quicker and more often than I count my money. Even now if I go in a store it's hard for me to pay a huge amount of money for one item. I say, 'Good Lord! What could mommy and daddy have done with that?' ''