On a dusty road in Malawi, Africa, a sweet starving orphan is given a nutritious meal. As she devours the meal, a huge smile appears on her face. She feels loved and her stomach is finally satisfied again, a gift from concerned unknown friends thousands of miles away.
For most restaurants making good food is the focus, but for Malawi’s Pizza, it is only a part. Malawi’s gives one meal to orphans in Malawi, Africa, for every meal purchased.
Malawi, one of the least developed countries worldwide, has a population with approximately 50 percent below the poverty line and many adults are affected with HIV and AIDS leaving many starving orphans. Kent Andersen, the owner and founder of Malawi’s Pizza, said this was a call to action for him. Andersen founded the restaurant to create a fresh and healthy pizza experience while helping alleviate hunger in Malawi. Their slogan is “pizza with a purpose.”
Former owner of Chef’s Table and currently owner of La Jolla Groves, Andersen has much experience satisfying people’s hunger. Now he does so in two parts of the world: Utah Valley and Malawi. The small country of Malawi has been blessed by the donations of the restaurant’s customers. The Vice President of Malawi traveled all the way to the Provo restaurant last fall to show appreciation for the donations made.
Andersen said one of the motivating factors for donating to Malawi was the fact that it is a small country with more than 1 million orphans. The restaurant believes in social responsibility. The restaurant features a meal donation counter. The restaurant also has signs on the walls displaying the amount of meals donated. Last year 134,943 meals were delivered to children in Malawi.
“Every six weeks we do accounting and send the funds,” Andersen said. “The meals are purchased and given to Feed the Children organization, who deliver the food.”
Malawi’s opened in August 2010. It has had such success and popularity, in a few months a new location will open in the Gateway Mall in Salt Lake City.
The restaurant is known for its fresh ingredients and fun atmosphere.
Garrett Burnett came with friends to Malawi’s for the first time. When asked if he would come again, the Vegas native studying business finance said, “Yes because I love giving back.”