February 11th marks international 211 day. The free, confidential information and referral service now known across the country began as an idea within Community Information Toronto, says Allyson Hewitt, the former Executive Director. It quickly became a cross-sectoral effort, with the United Way coming on board, along with telecommunication firms, anonymous donors, and the CRTC, which gave the organization the green light for the phone line.
“Everybody owned a piece of that pie, everybody knew their role was critical, and everybody knew they couldn’t do it on their own,” says Hewitt of the collaborative approach, which also involved the federal, provincial, and municipal governments.
Community Information Toronto made one of its first data-sharing agreements with the City of Toronto — an “unusual” decision as the City did not have a data sharing service,
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