Lava Mae’s Un-Gala Brings Out San Francisco’s Shower Chic

showered with love lava mae
Tatiana Fedorova, Seva Fridman, Galina Fedorova and Aksana Walton

Photo Credit: Kelly E. Carter

Guests came wearing rainboots in all colors, shower caps, raincoats and bathrobes and carrying or wearing umbrellas. Well, what do you expect when the attire is “shower chic,”—probably a first for San Francisco but certainly apropos considering it was Lava Mae‘s inaugural Showered with Love: the Un-Gala. The lively event was held April 4 at the Pavilion by the Bay on Treasure Island to benefit the fledgling organization that converts retired MUNI buses into mobile showers for San Francisco’s homeless.

lava mae umbrellas

Underneath suspended twinkling umbrellas, Lava Mae supporters enjoyed live music, adult beverages, food by Stacy Scott Catering and bite-size confections from Sixth Course. They heard captivating stories and toured the Lava Mae bus parked in front of the building, which offers stunning views back to the City by the Bay.

lava mae doniece sandoval
Lave Mae Founder Doniece Sandoval

Photo Credit: Sumit Kohli

Most of all, they heard Lava Mae founder Doniece Sandoval speak passionately about the organization that launched last June and provided over 1,500 showers to the homeless in 2014. Sandoval is determined to raise that number to 50,000 this year. With showers comes dignity and opportunity, she says. San Francisco – like so many cities across this country – has a massive shortage of showers and toilets available to the men, women and children who live on its streets. Before Lava Mae, there were only 16 showers stalls for over 3,500 homeless San Franciscans.

The event’s committee co-chairs were Ana Chowdury, Denise Paulson, Katie Storey, Jesse Tombs and Jason Yurasek while the honorary co-chairs were Supervisor London Breed, Ana & Abdur Chowdhury, Breanna DiGiammarino, Bevan Dufty, Supervisor Mark Farrell, Rob Forbes, Belinda Getler, Glenn Gilmore, Supervisor Jane Kim, Annie Longsworth & John Dallas, Janice Mirikatani, Shanna Nasiri and Diana Nelson.


Photos by: Sumit Kohli