Wawa joins Digital Main Street’s ShopHERE Program to Support Local Businesses

To help support our local small businesses, today Wawa is joining the ShopHERE powered by Google program. ShopHERE in collaboration with the Economic Development Corporation of Wawa and the Wawa Business Improvement Association looks to help over 100 local businesses get online this year.

ShopHERE powered by Google, which started in the City of Toronto, helps independent businesses and artists build or improve their digital presence and minimize the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In May, Google​ Canada announced​ a one million dollar investment to enable Digital Main Street’s to expand the program to municipalities across the country, offering more businesses and artists the opportunity to build their own online store.

The opportunities afforded by the digital economy are still limited if people don’t have the right skills. Understanding this from the outset, the program has been designed to help more small businesses and artists receive the digital skills training needed to participate in the digital economy.

The program is now available to small businesses in Wawa. Local businesses and artists can apply for the program at www.digitalmainstreet.ca/shophere to get their online store built at no-cost.

“Wawa has a thriving community of local bricks and mortar and home based businesses as well as artisans and artists that will benefit from the program” says Andy Stevens, Chair of the EDC. “It will make getting online accessible and serve to support businesses and the Wawa Goose Nest Market vendors to access a wider market segment that was not available to these businesses in the past.

“The Wawa BIA and EDC Wawa are working in concert to help bring the ShopHERE program to local businesses, artisans and artists with the understanding that if businesses are going to thrive in the information era they must have an online presence that is attractive and functional. A big thank you to all the companies and teams involved that are making this program possible”. Liz Talian Clarke, Chair of the Wawa BIA.

“Since Google began its business in Canada nearly twenty years ago, we’ve been focused on helping Canadian businesses of all sizes to unlock the prosperity of the internet,” says Sabrina Geremia, VP and Country Manager, Google Canada. “We remain optimistic and more determined than ever that technology is the toolkit for a world of opportunities. Our one million dollar investment will go towards expanding the ShopHERE program nationally, so we can help small businesses across Canada navigate the challenges ahead.”

“Main street businesses are facing unprecedented times due to COVID-19. They need to be able to sell online if they are going to survive and we are proud to expand the ShopHERE powered by Google program to help them achieve this. This program is critical in ensuring main streets can adapt and evolve during this crucial time.” – John Kiru, Executive Director, Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas

To find out more about the ShopHERE program, contact the EDC Wawa at [email protected], by phone 705 856 4419, or go to www.digitalmainstreet.ca/shophere to register directly.


About EDC Wawa – The Economic Development Corporation of Wawa is a forward-thinking, collaboration-oriented not for profit that works for the Community of Wawa to achieve it’s economic, environmental and social goals.

About Wawa BIA – The Wawa BIA works to promote Wawa’s business areas and improve the façade and streetscape, introducing benches, plantings, or pushing for a unique “look” that attracts shoppers and diners, increasing the desirability of the neighbourhood – and ultimately boosting property values. The Wawa BIA is also working on getting grants for the Municipality for festivals and special events, banners and murals, market research and other progressive projects that help to move Wawa forward.

About ShopHERE powered by Google – The ShopHERE program offers businesses and artists the opportunity to build a digital presence and minimize the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. ShopHERE is supported by a number of community and corporate partners, including Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas, Shopify, Google, Mastercard, Microsoft, Magnet, and The Schulich School of Business – York University.

About Digital Main Street – Digital Main Street is a program that helps main street businesses achieve digital transformation. The program is built around an online learning platform, structured training programs, and our Digital Service Squad, a team of street-level team members who help main street businesses grow and manage their operations through technology. Digital Main Street was created by the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) with direct support from the City of Toronto. DMS is also supported by a group of strategic business partners, including Google, MasterCard, Microsoft and Shopify.

EDC of Wawa