The notoriously charitable Carrie Underwood continues her efforts to help both people and animals in need. This holiday season, her Checotah Animal, Town and School Foundation Foundation (C.A.T.S.) donated $350,000 to schools in the singer's hometown of Checotah, Okla. Four local schools found out just before Christmas that they'll receive money to help with various supplies including computers, playground equipment, band uniforms, instruments, furniture and more.

"Late last year, each of the schools created a list of their needs and I am so thrilled that the C.A.T.S. Foundation was able to fund it all," says the Grammy winner. "It gives me great joy knowing we are helping my hometown schools to offer an even better education to the students. They deserve it."

Back in October, Carrie and C.A.T.S. volunteers teamed with KaBoom! to build a playground in Checotah. The blond beauty herself helped with the landscaping and painting playground equipment.

"It's always been a goal of mine to be able to do something for my community because it is a small town," Carrie told The Boot just after helping form the non-profit organization. "It's really important to me to be able to spread the love at times."

Carrie is putting the finishing touches on her fourth studio album, to be released sometime this year. You can catch her on the PBS special, 'Great Performances,' on Jan. 27, as she duets with the legendary Tony Bennett on 'It Had to Be You.'