Prince's Charity Tours Coast For Ways To Help Recovery

BILOXI (WLOX) -- A member of England's royal family is looking for the best way he can continue to help in hurricane recovery. Representatives for Prince Charles' charity, The Prince's Foundation, toured Biloxi and Gulfport Monday.

The group's mission is to support sustainable communities. The staff says Biloxi's Hope Six is the kind of development it likes.

"We practice the idea of mixed incomes and mixed use places in all of our projects," said Hank Dittmer, executive director of The Prince's Foundation.

The group came from England with a mission to help Prince Charles decide how best to help in the Gulf Coast's hurricane recovery.

"The Prince of Wales visited New Orleans just after the hurricane," said Dittmer "Just after visiting he asked his foundation, which I'm the chief executive officer of, to see how we could help. We're coming back to see how things have gone and what we might be able to do to be involved in the future."

Right now, The Prince's Foundation is funding job training in New Orleans. Officials say they're looking at bringing something similar to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

"We're interested, I think, in trying to see if we cannot work with people locally on the issue of training in construction and building crafts," said Dittmer. "Beginning to create some partnerships that might actually lead to training local people in making beautiful houses that everyone can be proud of for the long term."

Long term commitments are what the Gulf Coast Renaissance Corporation says our area needs.

The Corporation's Laura Davis said, "One of the biggest goals in the redevelopment effort is balancing short term urgent needs with long term objectives. Really build back the community as a sustainable community. That's one of the things I think that The Prince's Foundation truly understands."

Representatives from The Prince's Foundation also visited the Gulfport VA site, the East Biloxi Coordination Center, and the North Gulfport Community Land Trust.