Rocket Mortgage Classic Announces Fund To Tackle Detroit's Tech Access, Digital Literacy Gaps

The Rocket Mortgage Classic launched the Connect 313 Fund Tuesday, a partnership with the city of Detroit and United Way for Southeastern Michigan to improve internet and technology access across Detroit.

A Digital Inclusion Effort: As part of the Classic’s “Changing the Course” initiative established in May, the fund will invest in local nonprofit organizations with digital inclusion efforts.

The first donations will support programs to build up neighborhood tech hubs, empower local advocates and collect data.

The Rocket Mortgage Classic, a PGA Tour stop, takes place July 2-5 at Detroit Golf Club without an audience. 

“The Connect 313 Fund, alongside other primary beneficiaries, will allow us [to] address long-lasting gaps in access to healthcare, education and employment, which are a consequence of the underlying lack of digital connectivity,” Rocket Mortgage CEO Jay Farner said in a press release.

In addition to its direct investments, the Connect 313 Fund will coordinate citywide fundraising and advocacy efforts.

'Making Technology More Accessible': "I am encouraged that proceeds from the Rocket Mortgage Classic will help create connectivity hubs across the city of Detroit," Darienne Hudson, president and CEO of the United Way for Southeastern Michigan, said in a press release.

“The Connect 313 Fund is a collaborative effort that is vitally important for every family, business, and organization – making technology more accessible to children, families, and communities.”

The fund allows Detroit to realize a dream of becoming a national model for digital inclusion, Mayor Mike Duggan said in a statement. 

“By striving to provide all Detroiters with access to the digital world, technology and digital literacy, we can ensure they will also have access to the opportunity it brings.”

Detroit Nonprofits Benefiting From PGA Event: Alongside its fund reveal, the Rocket Mortgage Classic announced The Children’s Foundation and Greater Palmer Park Community as the beneficiaries of its 2020 PGA Tour event.

It will raise funds through the Rocket Mortgage Fall Classic, a golf outing and culinary event for charity that's planned for September; online merchandise sales; and exclusive access to online player chats during the event.

“Our overriding mission has always been, and will always be, to use this event as a way to effect positive change in the city of Detroit, and we’re confident that we’ll be able to do that for several years to come, thanks to some creative new activations that we have developed to support the cause,” Jason Langwell, the executive director of the Rocket Mortgage Classic, said in the press release.

Benzinga file photo by Bryce Matulonis. 

Posted In: Connect 313 FundDetroitGolfJay FarnerRocket MortgageRocket Mortgage ClassicUnited Way for Southeastern MichiganNewsSportsEventsGeneral