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Eat pizza to donate to charity: How a local pizzeria is serving the community

Massimo’s, the well-loved Italian restaurant in Hout Bay, is not only about making good pizzas. Its passionate owners, Massimo and Tracy Orione, are encouraging all regulars and new customers to get involved in charitable initiatives – and all they have to do is buy some pizza.

Taking inspiration from a little pizza place in Philadelphia in the USA, the Massimo’s Pay It Forward initiative has already helped distribute over 700 pizzas to charitable organisations since August last year. The initiative is really simple: buy one or more ‘virtual’ slices of pizza for R10 a slice and, for every six slices sold, Massimo’s will deliver a pizza to one of the chosen local charities or institutions.

The Pay It Forward initiative. Image courtesy of the restaurant.

The Pay It Forward initiative. Image courtesy of the restaurant.

The list of the beneficiaries will change regularly, and the team is always looking for suggestions. Charities that have been supported so far include Hout Bay Music Project, DARG (Domestic Animal Rescue Group), Hout Bay Cares, Hout Bay Volunteer Emergency Service, James House, Hout Bay High School (an afterschool homework project), Hout Bay United Football Club, Keep Hout Bay Beautiful, Hout Bay Fire Rescue, NSRI, Shaygum (the young dog rescuer), and Hout Bay Cycling Club.

Another way to give back at Massimo’s is to order from the list of charitable pizzas and dishes; for every item ordered, a percentage of the price goes to a chosen charity. These dishes include:

  • The Luna pizza – named after Massimo’s beautiful border collie – with tomato, mozzarella, feta, bacon and avo. For each sold, R10 goes to DARG.
  • The Sunflower pasta or Pavarotti pizza, both with bolognese sauce. For each sold, R10 goes to The Sunflower Fund to sponsor bone-marrow donors.
  • The Happy Valley calzone, stuffed with ham, mushrooms, mozzarella, feta, caramelised onions, cacio cheese and avo. For each sold, R10 goes to Hout Bay Neighbourhood Watch.
  • The Amore Limone aperitivo, with sparkling wine and limoncello. For each sold, R5 goes to Hout Bay Voluntary Emergency Services.
  • And, launching this weekend, the JJ’s Jewels, which is a dish of oven-roasted artisanal sausages, served with roasted potatoes and caramelised onions. For each sold, R10 will goes to Hout Bay Community Crime Prevention.
Community members benefitting from the Pay It Forward initiative at Massimo's. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

Community members benefitting from the Pay It Forward initiative at Massimo’s. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

If you want to contribute, head to Massimo’s for your next pizza feast or go past their takeaway hatch, Mimmi To Go, and grab a slice for charity. If you’re not in the area, simply use the SnapScan app and scan the code on the Massimo’s website.

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