The Rise of ‘Chowfunding’


Last weekend I was suffering from a sore lower back – but I still drove out to Ackworth, Ga., to play a USTA league tennis match. I’m very glad I did, too, because it shows that sometimes creativity can emerge from the most unlikely of places.

Our opponents, Brian and Raj, were unbelievably nice and gracious to us—the city boys (Ken Shell was my partner) who had to drive nearly 45 minutes to get to our destination. Very often, discussions during court changeovers range from the mundane—like, “nice hold”—to other, more in-depth chats. We got to talking about professions, and then the question came around to me.

After I told Brian I was a freelance writer, he asked, “well, so what do you write?” After I told him my first passion is magazine-feature writing, here’s how the conversation went:

[me] “I also just published my first, book, too, which I’m really excited about.”
[Brian] “Good for you. Congratulations – what’s the topic?”
[me] “In a nutshell, it’s a blueprint on how to use homemade pizza to raise money in local communities.”
[Brian] “What a cool concept. So it’s like crowdfunding – an ask and a give?”
[me] “It’s actually more like a give and a give. I feed people and they donate to the charity I choose (Positive Impact). So it’s more like ‘Chowfunding.'”

I literally pulled that out of the air, on the fly—but it came when prompted by smart questions about Pizza for Good. And it’s all totally true: “Chowfunding” is alive and well elsewhere, too, as you’ll see in later PFG posts on restaurateurs who earmark time, energy and manpower to support local causes.

PS: just in case I snagged the domain – I know Rob O’Connor will be pleased. 😉

(Photo above: José Aponte playing an ALTA match/image by Will Pollock)

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