Local pizza manager wants to give back
Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Kassandra Rodriguez and Rene Resendez of the Central California Blood Center register blood donors during a blood drive hosted by the Madera Mountain Mike’s Pizza.
Since he came to Madera about a month ago to manage the two Mountain Mike’s locations (2180 W. Cleveland Ave. and 1460 E. Yosemite Ave.), Alex Chouhan is trying to find ways to give back to the community.
He started on Oct. 12 by hosting the Central California Blood Center at the Office Depot parking lot behind one of his restaurants.
He is working with the Central California Blood Bank for another blood drive.
“I was reading a story about a kid at children’s hospital and he needs a blood transfusion almost every day,” Chouhan said. “It said the blood bank supplies were so low that he wasn’t going to make it long. I started to think and got with my sister and wife about how to help. We put our heads together and came up with the idea to give a personal size pizza for everyone to give blood. Everyone loves pizza and Mountain Mike’s is the best pizza so maybe that will help people to come out.”
He turned to his Mountain Mike’s franchise to see what he could do. In turn, Chouhan has personal pizza vouchers to give to blood donors.
“I just got these vouchers and want to do something with them,” he said. “I want to hand out these vouchers at the blood bank.”
He plans on having the vouchers available at the Central California Blood Bank location on Herndon and at other blood drives in Madera.
“The blood center said I can have blood drives at the store,” he said. “I might do it once every other month. I just want to do something. I just want to do what I can.”
Chouhan is also giving those that have given blood the opportunity to receive the vouchers.
“If people have given blood recently and can prove it, they can come in and get their free personal-size pizza,” he said. “That will go on until the end of December. When I give blood,, they usually give you a sticker so that can be proof.”
Chouhan came from India to the United States in 1991 and made his way to Madera to manage the two Mountain Mike’s Pizza restaurants in Madera.
“We came from India in 1991 to Santa Rosa,” he said. “We stayed there until 2001 and moved to Iowa until about a year ago to Madera. We bought these Mountain Mike’s. I am the General Manager in Madera. My sister has two, as well. We will have a third location in Chowchilla and just broke ground.”
He wants to help out as much as he can and figures giving blood is a good way to do that.
“I just want to do something,” he said. “I just want to do what I can. God forbid, my kids never need the blood.”