Early on in the pandemic, as I think has been talked about, we initially thought this program was going to be three months and we had to get help out. Using that digital main street example, those organizations approached us and said, “We have the capacity here. We've been running a smaller version of this program. We think we could do some more good in this.”
Invest Ottawa and Communitech both approached us and said they had a number of students. We ended up using 1,400 different students to help us deliver digital advice to companies across the region. Those organizations approached us, and we went back to them and said, “Can you collaborate and pull something bigger together?” They produced the digital main street project, which ended up having four different organizations involved.
They went on to deliver support to over 30,000 organizations within the region, providing some of the necessary activities and support for companies that had never been digital before, or refining companies' digital presence so that they could move into international markets and refine and expand their coverage and business model.
That's a bit of the approach that happened in that case.