Seattle-base nonprofit grateful for Nelson Mandela's vision

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by HEATHER GRAF / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @HeatherGrafK5

Posted on December 5, 2013 at 11:43 PM

A Seattle-based nonprofit says Nelson Mandela is the inspiration behind the life-changing work they do each day.

PATH is an organization that fights emerging and epidemic diseases in 70 countries, including South Africa.  President and CEO Steve Davis credits Mandela's absolute sense of equity for making their work possible.

"He represents and embodies both the determination that the world should have equity, that we should be treated more equally, and also reconciliation, that we have to build bridges and not continue to fight," he said.

That's why Mandela's death hits home for the staff at PATH, even from half a world away.

"So when I heard that he died, I was really deeply affected," said David.

He believes Mandela opened doors for nonprofits like PATH to come to South Africa and do things like immunizations, maternal and child health, and work to try to stop the spread of AIDS and HIV. 

"The world lost one of it's most extraordinary, compassionate, and brilliant heroes," he said.

Davis' only regret is that he never got to meet Mandela himself.

"I've read everything he's written, I've followed his journey, and I was in a couple contexts where I was close, but I didn't meet him," he said.

Still, he knows Mandela would be proud of the work PATH is doing, and says that's how his legacy will live on.

To learn more about Path's work in South Africa and nearly 70 other countries, click here.

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