San Francisco isn't a town famous for its fashion or its celebrities, but anyone at the Conservatory of Flowers on Wednesday night never would have known.
The iconic venue served as a backdrop for the inaugural Unite SF Design, a philanthropic runway fashion show featuring local designers Justin Jamison, Mansoor Scott, Tony Sananikone, Tamara Jaric and Christian Gardner of Astor & Black.
But the star of the evening was the beneficiary. The event raised funds and awareness for The Lunchbox Fund, a humanitarian organization founded by model Topaz Page-Green and actors Joaquin Phoenix and Balthazar Getty that provides daily meals for poor and at-risk students in South African high schools.
"It's great that the San Francisco community is supporting this important work," Phoenix told The Huffington Post. The actor serves on the organization board alongside his sister, Rain Phoenix, Mario Batali and others.
"The concept is so simple," explained Rain Phoenix, who hosted Wednesday night's event with Page-Green.
"We know that kids who stay in school have less risk of falling into prostitution and less risk of acquiring HIV," she continued. "Providing a basic meal to students who wouldn't otherwise have one helps these kids stay focused so they can stay in school. We think that could have major implications down the line."
Since launching in 2005, the organization has attracted support from Bill Clinton, Yoko Ono, Liv Tyler, Bono, Beyonce and others. Last year, Salman Rushdie auctioned off a handwritten manuscript to raise money for the program.
At Wednesday's fashion show and event, supporters posed for photos, drank cocktails and watched a standing ovation performance of "What's Love Got To Do With It" by The X Factor's Jason Brock.
"The event was a success because of our San Francisco community," said Nisreen Gardner, one of the event founders, to HuffPost. "Everyone selflessly collaborated and connected to bring about change and support local design."
See photos from Unite SF Design, courtesy of Drew Altizer Photography, in the slideshow below: