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Recovery Plans From Gulf Coast Community Foundation and Miss. CVB

September 2, 2005

Recovery Plans From Gulf Coast Community Foundation and Miss. CVB
September 2, 2005 – The Gulf Coast Community Foundation and the Mississippi Gulf Coast CVB have established the "Build Back Our Coast Fund" to aid the economic recovery, rebuilding efforts and job regeneration in the coastal region. The foundation has already received funding commitments from organizations across the country.

"Right now, the focus in the region is appropriately on basic human needs – portable water, food, shelter, medical care, fuel, and other basic necessities for our community. We salute all the organizations and individuals who are helping us from around the nation, and even the world, through their donations to organizations like the American Red Cross and other charities," Executive Director of the MGCVB Steve Richer said. "We must, however, look at the long term needs of our community. That means jobs and bringing back the businesses that support them, particularly those generated by our hospitality industry. The Gulf Coast Community Foundation has set up the "Build Back Our Coast Fund" for this purpose."

"I am pleased to report that many corporations, national organizations both in and out of the travel industry, and foundations have offered help. I have personally been impacted most by the generosity of the American people and friends around the world. The kindness and caring has been overwhelming."

Donations can be made via the Foundation’s Web site at Donors may earmark funds specifically for similar efforts in Louisiana, Alabama, or Florida via sister community foundations in New Orleans, Mobile, and Pensacola. You can call 800.474.4445 for additional information.

The Gulf Coast Community Foundation is a 30-year told Biloxi, Mississippi-based organization that administers charitable funds for many local entities, as well as its own funding. Both the offices of the Foundation and the Mississippi Gulf Coast CVB were destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. Coastal leaders, including Dickie Roberts, executive director of the Foundation and Richer, who have evacuated the Coast to neighboring states have been able to set up the fund, in part because they have telephone, cell phone, and computer access to do so.

A list of participating national organizations, including the National Tour Association, American Bus Association, Travel Industry Association, Hotel Sales & Marketing Association International, and American Society of Association Executives, is in the process of being compiled. The American Gaming Association and its "Katrina Relief Fund," which was already underway and has begun soliciting its members, is cooperating with the effort.

Richer acknowledged the work of the CVB’s ad agency, TURKEL, located in Miami, for its contributions and commitment to help with the fundraising, and the Greater Miami CVB for its contribution of both professional staff and the services of its New York-based public relations firm, Rubenstein & Associates.

Digital files are available at

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