This is a time when Canada must harness its community-driven resilience. We’re asking you to share examples of how Canadian communities are responding to the crisis with creativity and imagination. Collective problem-solving and collaboration will be instrumental in how Canada mitigates the local impacts of COVID-19 and creates on-the-ground solutions.

Highlighted Initiatives

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Initiatives

Posters that businesses can use to communicate how they are operating: pickup, delivery, in person or online

Food | Local businesses

This is real-life representation of the Riverside BIA Directory, a colour-coded live map which indicates in real time what level businesses are operating at. The colour codes are the same for the map and signs. Green indicates a business that’s open but may have reduced hours and offerings, yellow means a business is open online or via phone only, and red means the business is closed for now.

Together Apart: Platform to support small businesses in the Ottawa region

Food | General: Online communities and networks | Local businesses

List & links to businesses that are open and what kind of service they are offering (gift cards, delivery, etc.)

Inside Ajax newsletter profiles various COVID19 community initiatives

Arts and Culture | Children | Food | Fundraising and volunteering | General: Online communities and networks | Seniors | Social isolation

This edition includes profiles of At Home with Ajax Council FB Live Series; COVID-19 Window Project; Stay Home Ajax #SupportLocal; Ajax Library: Meet Flipster; “Community to Table” Food Box; Friendly Call Program for Seniors; and Ajax Hygiene Hub.

Visit Guelph website & social media provides information on how to support local during the pandemic

Food | Local businesses | Policy leadership

The virtual discovery page shares ways to support local businesses, farmers and growers, and charities through new digital ways.

Canadian company helps local small businesses sell products during COVID-19

Local businesses

London Drugs will be dedicating shelf space in select stores to small businesses that have had to close their doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That space, located in the centre aisles of the stores – which the company says it is “transforming into local central” – will be stocked with products entirely from local businesses.

Canada Bikes’ crowd-sourced google spreadsheet details COVID19 bike/pedestrian responses across Canadian cities

General: Crowdsourced tools and resources | Mobility and transportation

Categories being tracked include: are bicycle shops an essential service; are beg buttons disabled; partial closures; closed streets; distance and transit-oriented development.

New Brunswick is using ‘household bubbles’ to socialize amid COVID-19

Policy leadership | Public health

The introduction of ‘household bubbles’ allows a family in one house to choose one other household to spend time with, assuming that both agree to the arrangement and don’t have close contact with anyone else.

Architecture firm shares architecture challenges for children in lockdown

Arts and Culture | Children

British architecture studio Foster + Partners is publishing a series of architecture challenges, including building a paper skyscraper and creating a city, to keep children in coronavirus lockdown entertained.

City of Montreal issues call for proposals for non-profits for the purpose of providing technical support to businesses

Local businesses | Policy leadership

Proposals can address issues pertaining to supply, administrative support, people management, sales systems or other areas. The implemented solutions will help small businesses deal with the challenges from COVID-19.

Mi’kmaq not-for-profit using technology to make medical supplies

Indigenous | Local businesses

A Mi’kmaq run non profit agency is using 3-D printing technology to make medical supplies for health care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The 3-D printers are normally in classrooms across Nova Scotia but are now in Halifax printing protective equipment that may be in short supply for isolated communities.

Downtown Kamloops’ BIA COVID19 web & social media platform

Local businesses
Three focus areas: DOWNTOWN TO GO, a #Supportlocal campaign; BUSINESS is OPEN, information on Downtown Kamloops Businesses that are closed (temporarily), offering take-out, pick-up, online stores and other business models that will help the community stay #ykastrong; COMMUNITY & INNOVATION showcasing how Downtown Kamloops businesses are pivoting; and RESOURCES FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS

In-house Elders available for support during this time of crisis, offering support and building resiliency.

Indigenous | Mental health

Canada’s national Indigenous women’s organization, NWAC, is the political voice of Indigenous women, girls and gender-diverse people in Canada, inclusive of First Nations on and off reserve, status and non-status, disenfranchised, Métis and Inuit. They are working with our Provincial and Territorial Member Associations (PTMAs), our NWAC elders and youth and communicating with Indigenous Services Canada to keep members informed and updated about COVID-19.

A Toronto-based consultancy has built a visualization of sidewalk widths in Toronto to support decisions and data around social distancing

General: Crowdsourced tools and resources

Created by Ratio.City, an organization with a mission to gather this data and provide the analysis that will unlock the potential of cities around the world.

Virtual map gives general location of fairy houses and gardens in Greater Victoria

Children

Inspired by scavenger hunts and other creative activities people are thinking up to keep busy during the pandemic, Breese decided to create a virtual map of the region’s fairy hot spots.

Recovery site for homeless COVID-19 patients offers dignity and a pathway to housing

Frontline services | Housing and homelessness | Policy leadership

The recovery site for COVID-positive homeless people is a unique collaboration between many health partners, government, addiction recovery supports, community & neighbourhood groups and Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontier Canada providing expertise on project co-ordination and logistics. Among the primary goals of the recovery site is treating homeless patients with dignity in a clinical setting and ensuring they have a home to go to afterward — not a return to homelessness.

British Columbia working with the Cities of Vancouver and Victoria to transition people living in encampments into temporary accommodations with wraparound supports

Housing and homelessness | Policy leadership

The Province of BC, in partnership with BC Housing and local municipalities, has worked to secure and operate 686 hotel and community centre accommodations in Vancouver and 324 hotel spaces in Victoria. This allows people from the encampments to safely physically distance, with access to important health, social and other supports.

Manitoba government wants contractor to provide meals for 15,000 students, as pandemic halts school programs

Children | Food | Local businesses

The contractor will supply the meals to 17 hubs set up across the province. The food will then be delivered to homes or a specific pick-up location by a network of volunteers, non-profit organizations and private-sector food delivery companies, the RFP states. They’ll deliver a five-day supply of food products for each student every week, with instructions on how to prepare the meals.

Five large companies (including two banks) come together to support front-line healthcare workers and help fight food insecurity in Toronto

Food | Fundraising and volunteering | Local businesses

The Scotiabank Arena has been transformed into Toronto’s largest kitchen to prepare up to 10,000 meals a day. Working with a network of hospitals to donate to front-line workers and Second Harvest to donate to food banks and shelters this coalition of partners is delivering meals across Greater Toronto.

Artists Create Murals on Closed and Boarded up Shops across Main Streets in Vancouver

Arts and Culture | Fundraising and volunteering | Local businesses

Vancouver artists are working together during the COVID-19 pandemic to create some beauty through public murals. Much of the city’s busiest areas have turned into ghost towns and storefronts are being boarded up. But the Vancouver Mural Festival (VMF) is commissioning artists to transform those fronts with temporary works of art.

Hong Kong-based restaurant creates playbook on getting back to business

Food | General: Sector resources | Local businesses | Public health

Black Sheep Restaurants has created a playbook detailing every measure they have taken to combat COVID-19 and are offering it free-of-charge online to help fellow restaurateurs and business owners. Basic protocols from hygiene practices to how to communicate with guests are covered, and as well as helpful tips including where to source packaging for delivery and ideas for how to re-structure team schedules.

LocalLove.retales.ca links Nova Scotia businesses with online gift cards

General: Online communities and networks | Local businesses

So you don’t have to go out today but you can invest in a local biz for tomorrow

Parking ban in areas of Victoria will give pedestrians more room

Mobility and transportation | Parks and public space | Policy leadership | Public health

Parking restrictions are coming to numerous Victoria neighbourhoods as transportation experts try to find space for walkers. Victoria transportation experts say they will expand the program to other neighbourhoods, including Quadra Village, Cook Street Village, Vic West and Fairfield. Those pedestrian heavy areas could see changes in the coming weeks.

Victoria seniors volunteers platform

Mental health | Seniors | Social isolation

Wellandtrulygrey.com is the effort of a small group of like-minded, Victoria-based, volunteer seniors who recognize that many of their fellow isolated seniors are struggling to stay connected with their peers, their families and the community resources they require. For these isolated seniors, wellandtrulygrey.com is their source of vital links to information about COVID-19 and government and community resources generated to help fight the virus and combat its impacts. It is also their interactive bulletin board and sounding board to help them stay connected.

City of Victoria acquires 115 motel rooms to house homeless population

Housing and homelessness | Policy leadership

These rooms are meant for people who have not displayed any symptoms of COVID-19, and one person will occupy each room. The rooms will be available to vulnerable people living outside in order to make sure they can meet physical distancing protocols put in place by the provincial health officer. The new locations will be administered by BC Housing and social service providers will be identifying people in the community who would be suitable to move in. Temporary outdoor homeless shelters at Royal Athletic Park and Topaz Park are currently being set up as temporary stopgap measures before authorities are able to find suitable indoor shelter spaces.

City of Victoria closes streets near Beacon Hill Park, Dallas Road to encourage social distancing

Mobility and transportation | Parks and public space | Policy leadership | Public health

In addition to these changes, the City of Victoria will also be sending out city staff to public spaces to engage with residents about playground and recreation facilities to remind them about physical distancing. CRD and City of Victoria parks are remaining open, though physical distancing is still encouraged.

Victoria Assigns Parks Staff To Start Growing Food For Residents

Food | Parks and public space | Policy leadership

The parks department is working on growing 50,000 to 75,000 seedlings to give to residents in May and June for food security measures. City staff are currently in discussions with farmers and seed libraries to come up with a shortlist of easy-to-grow edible plants that would be ideal for home gardening.

City of Victoria won’t enforce rules on camping in parks to support people experiencing homelessness in physical distancing

Housing and homelessness | Parks and public space | Policy leadership | Public health

The city has chosen Topaz park and Royal Athletic park as designated sites where harm reduction services, food services and security will be set up. Both have running water so people can wash their hands. The long-term plan is to get homeless people inside but with limited city-owned facilities that can be used, B.C. Housing has had to help find places like vacant motels for homeless people to stay.

Development and building applications in Victoria can now be submitted online

General: Sector resources | Policy leadership

The applications that can be submitted online now include rezoning applications, development permits, heritage alteration permits, temporary use permits, variance applications, building plumbing and electrical applications.

City of Victoria launches interactive map showing where cherry blossom and plum trees are blooming in the region

Arts and Culture | Parks and public space | Policy leadership

The interactive map pinpoints different types of blossoming trees across the city. While provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry is encouraging all residents to stay at home as much as possible, time outdoors is important for mental and physical health. With the weather improving in Victoria, now is a great time to explore some blooming flowers, as long as pedestrians follow physical distancing guidelines and stay at least two metres apart from one another.

PEI transitions to more accessible forms of support services

Mental health | Policy leadership | Seniors | Social isolation

To provide support for residents who are suffering in various ways due to COVID, the Province has organized online psychiatry services, call-in clinics to replace walk-in clinics, and addiction day programs that uphold social distancing protocols.

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