Model & Strategy

LavaMae X  is a nonprofit accelerator that’s building a worldwide network of providers who take critical services to the street, where the unhoused need them most. With an approach rooted in Radical Hospitality®—meeting people, wherever they are, with extraordinary care—LavaMae X is changing the way the world sees and serves our unhoused neighbors, and helps restore dignity, rekindle optimism and fuel a sense of opportunity for people experiencing homelessness.

LavaMae X evolved from Lava Mae, the nonprofit innovator of mobile hygiene services. The organization restructured in January 2020 in response to rising interest in replicating its services globally, proving the massive need for street-based services and training others to deliver Radical Hospitality.

LavaMae X aims to help communities develop programs that serve 100,000 unhoused individuals around the globe by 2024. In order to succeed, LavaMae X offers replicators tools such as the buildIt online platform, a free DIY toolkit and forum that helps anyone, anywhere launch a mobile hygiene program. The kit covers everything from getting started to finding funders to taking Radical Hospitality to the street. Additionally, LavaMae X provides hands-on training for effectively operating a mobile hygiene service and safely managing guest behavior. When possible, it connects replicators to resources, including funding opportunities.

At a Glance
Founded: 2013
Founder & CEO: Doniece Sandoval
Systemic Poverty
Location of work: Domestic, West Coast
LavaMae X
San Francisco, CA
Delivering dignity & opportunity – one mobile shower at a time
Blue Lava Mae Bus
Doniece Sandoval of Lava Mae
Meet Doniece Sandoval

Doniece Sandoval was compelled to start Lava Mae based on a fierce belief that everyone has a right to dignity, which brings opportunity and the knowledge that access to showers and sanitation are in serious short supply for the homeless.  For her work, she received the Innovation Award at the 2015 Bank of the West Philanthropy Awards.

Doniece has orchestrated marketing, PR and development for both private and nonprofit organizations including ZERO1: The Art & Technology Network, San Jose Museum of Art, Wilson McHenry Company, Informix, DoubleClick, Toysrus.com, McGuire & Company for Coca Cola and ACA Joe among others. Her passion is finding unique solutions to problems that matter to her.

IMPACT

Since its launch, the organization has fielded more than 4,320 inquiries from city agencies, nonprofits, governments, refugee aid organizations and individuals in 38 countries seeking to provide similar services—and has already trained, directly advised or inspired more than 170 programs in 148 communities in 11 countries to create mobile hygiene services based on LavaMae X–designed programs.

  • RT @RightToShower: We're humbled by what was accomplished with our incredible mission partner, @LavaMaeX, and network of partners in 2020.…
  • RT @Mellasour: @JAYVERSACE Hey, if anyone wants to help with the issues homeless people face there’s a non profit called LAVA MAE who opera…
  • As we continue to grapple with the recent attack on the U.S. Capitol, the bright light of last week (and every week… https://t.co/mH3Umej1MG
  • RT @stanthonysf: GREAT NEWS: @lavamaex mobile showers and hygiene essentials are back in the Tenderloin! They will be at Glide every Thur…
  • Thanks to our wonderful supporters, we reached our $55K Challenge Match AND our Founder's Match, totaling to over $… https://t.co/cPMNyS1Fia
  • LAST day to give! Doniece Sandoval, Founder of LavaMaeˣ, has given us a fantastic end of year gift—another $55,000… https://t.co/stxKE9H9Jz
  • We did it Joe, we hit our $55K Challenge Match! To all of our supporters who donated and spread the word, THANK YO… https://t.co/ydSVi9baOC
  • TWO days left to give! We're getting so close to our $55K Challenge Match! Will you help us reach it? Every dollar… https://t.co/L18hKPAsoS
  • Last Week To Give! We're getting so close to our $55K Challenge Match! Will you help us reach it? Every dollar rais… https://t.co/p1lbaRihZq
  • Our partnership with the @UCSF Street Nursing Team has helped our guests receive critical healthcare services, and… https://t.co/BkieEpvwwA
  • This year, LavaMaeˣ worked with Shower Power in NYC to increase handwashing in response to COVID-19. Read more abou… https://t.co/aR9RWe8VCf
  • This year, we helped SHARE Community bring mobile showers to serve its unhoused neighbors in Antioch, CA! Learn mo… https://t.co/3OBcyB4HcH
  • Still need last minute gifts? Shop LavaMaeX merch and give the gift of hygiene! All merchandise is custom designed… https://t.co/2QNZKUQWyM
  • Ignite Our Inspiration! From Denver to Hamburg, we’re consulting with communities—for FREE—to deploy mobile showers… https://t.co/OfagRzK1TU