Daniel Thera; A Successful Journey
One of the longest serving partners of GPiH, Daniel Thera, who has been with us since our beginning, is preparing to retire from his position as CEO of the non-profit that he founded. Daniel Thera, a former Lieutenant Governor, has been working with GPiH since founding the Malian recognized non-profit, Centre Protestante pour l'Assistance Médical au Mali ("CPAM") in 2000. It is noteworthy that Mr. Thera left his governorship in order to start CPAM because he believed that the work of CPAM would be God's work, and it was going to be more spiritually enriching for him as a deeply spiritual person.
With CPAM, Mr. Thera has achieved a tremendous amount. CPAM now operates one of the largest hospitals in the country, the Koutiala Hospital. To put it into perspective, Koutiala's hospital is on 10 acres of land and has 180 staff workers, with capacity to treat a lot of patients with modern medicine. CPAM also operates 16 other rural health centers. In total, CPAM now boasts a 302 staff capacity, up from the 40 with which it began. It has been a long, successful journey for Daniel and CPAM.
For GPiH, Mr. Thera's help and cooperation cannot be understated. With Mr. Thera's CPAM, GPiH was able to build six new rural health centers in the Bako region of Mali. Mr. Thera said, "The impact of the health centers was amazing...before people would travel for 50 to even 100 kilometers before they could access a health center. It is great when you have two or three of these health centers in these places...women don't have to travel far to deliver." These health centers have contributed to the lowering of child and maternal mortality rates in the Bako region of Mali.
It has been a great journey for Mr. Thera since he decided to join the nonprofit world. He would be the first one to admit that he never thought he could achieve what he has achieved with CPAM. He is now retiring, but not in the classic sense. He will stay at CPAM in an advising capacity. He will also be teaching management at a university in Bamako. However, what excites him the most is that he will finally have the time to write his own life story, his achievements, and the lessons he has learned along the way. Mr. Thera also plans to spend more time with his nine grandchildren. It will be a busy retirement.
Daniel's passion and commitment to serving rural Malian communities has brought about incredibly positive change for women and children struggling to survive and thrive. GPiH will be forever grateful for the partnership with Daniel Thera and CPAM, and wish him all the best in his retirement!