99¢ Makes the Net "Work" Detroit

Forty percent of Detroit residents have zero access to internet, including 70% of school-aged children. Mr. Smith, a senior North End resident, had no real access to a world beyond his front doors. He had never owned a computer and wasn't able to afford Internet access from the companies currently available to Detroit residents. He heard about the Equitable Internet Initiative, which was able to get him a computer and bring him online while also teaching him how to set up an email, and use video conferencing. Now he is able to connect with his grandkids in ways he never could before.

Over the past 18 months, the Equitable Internet has connected 150 households like Mr. Smith’s with high quality, gigabit Internet in three Detroit neighborhoods.

The Equitable Internet Initiative (EII) project focuses on building community-owned high-speed internet networks, available at a low cost to residents who otherwise might not be able to afford Internet access. EII is accelerating outreach, training and wireless broadband Internet sharing on the neighborhood level in Detroit. The program’s mission is to ensure that more Detroit residents have the ability to leverage online access and digital technology for social and economic development.

The goals of this initiative are to:

Increase Internet access through the distribution of shared Gigabit Internet connections in three underserved neighborhoods.

Increase Internet adoption through a Digital Stewards training program that prepares residents of those same neighborhoods with the skills necessary to bring their communities online.

Increase pathways for youth into the opportunities of Detroit’s burgeoning Innovation District through intermediate and advanced digital literacy trainings.

Over the coming year, we want to expand our network to connect 500 additional households in our current neighborhoods and expand the program into more neighborhoods. This will help our networks become self-sustainable into the future.

We need your support to reach our goal and bring Detroit residents online. This funding will help us pay for equipment, the main Internet connection, and the work of our Digital Stewards in building the networks.

If we can do this in Detroit, a city that filed for bankruptcy five years ago, it can happen in many other places too.


EII Southwest Detroit 
EII North End 
EII Islandview
  • Vincent Hardy 
    • $5 
    • 20 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $40 
    • 39 mos
  • Jacob Davison 
    • $100 
    • 39 mos
  • Brad Menchl 
    • $100 
    • 43 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 46 mos
See all

Fundraising team (16)

Joan C. Ross 
Raised $1,853 from 14 donations
Detroit, MI
North End Woodward Community Coalition NEWCC (Newcc) 
Registered nonprofit
Donations are typically 100% tax deductible in the US.
Team member
Raised $1,115 from 3 donations
Heru House 
Team member
Raised $1,075 from 20 donations
Meghan Sobocienski 
Team member
Raised $430 from 9 donations
Johnny Eatman 
Team member
Raised $280 from 2 donations
See all

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