Madonna Donates Money to Italian Earthquake Victims
04/07/2009 AT 08:15 PM EDT
Madonna, whose paternal grandparents lived in Pacentro until 1919, made a "substantial donation" for the relief effort following the 6.3 magnitude quake that left more than 200 dead, says her publicist Liz Rosenberg. The rep wouldn't give the amount, but a source says it's about $500,000.
"I am happy to lend a helping hand to the town that my ancestors are from," Madonna tells PEOPLE. "My heart goes out to the families that have lost loved ones or their homes."