‘Pizza With Purpose’: Cincinnati pop-up raising money for those in Maui

Companion, a pizza pop-up, is hosting a fundraiser at Oakley Wines on Sunday, Aug. 27, to help...
Companion, a pizza pop-up, is hosting a fundraiser at Oakley Wines on Sunday, Aug. 27, to help those affected by the Maui fires.(Provided: Emily Lang)
Published: Aug. 23, 2023 at 3:36 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - As officials and crews in Maui continue to sort through the debris and help those affected by the wildfires, a small business in Cincinnati decided it was time to give a helping hand by hosting a fundraiser thousands of miles away.

After hearing about the devastation that has swallowed the island of Maui, killing over 100 people, Companion Pizza’s Chef and co-owner Matt Owens wanted to help in some way.

On Sunday, Aug. 27, Chef Owens is donating 100% of the profits made from customers who order the “Aloha” pizza to the Maui Food Bank.

“In days following the tragedy, we’ve learned so much about the spirit of the Hawaiian people and the concept of Aloha, or spreading Aloha,” Owens wrote in a press release. “We chose the name based on that meaning - it felt perfect for what we’re trying to do - raise money to feed those displaced from their home by this awful fire.”

The Aloha contains Companion’s house tomato sauce, a mozzarella-provolone blend, fresh juicy pieces of pineapple, seared Spam, pickled jalapenos, edible flowers and a furikake crust topping sprinkled on top of their 72-hour fermented slow dough, described Owens.

“Though we are just a little pizza pop-up in Cincinnati, Ohio, we felt that we could use the small platform we have to do a little good,” said Owens.

Even if you are “Team: No Pineapple on Pizza,” Companion is encouraging all of its customers to donate anyway.

“As the news cycle begins to move on, we know there’s still so much work to be done,” says Owens. “Given the extent of the devastation, there will be years of support needed to help the residents of Maui and Lahaina put their lives back together and rebuild.”

The event will be from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Oakley Wines, the pizza pop-up’s temporary location.

This fundraiser is the first of many for Companion as it also launches its “Pizza With Purpose” initiative.

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