Feb 21, 2014, 10:48 AM EDT
Kei Kamara‘s story is one of the most interesting you’ll ever come across in global soccer.
Fleeing from war-torn Sierra Leone at the age of 16, Kamara built a new life for himself in California as a refugee and became a success in Major League Soccer, dazzling for Sporting Kansas City before being loaned out to Norwich City in 2013, then joining English Championship side Middlesbrough from MLS on a two-year contract last summer.
After switching the U.S. for England, Kamara can certainly be classed as a globetrotter. But he hasn’t forgotten about his homeland in Africa, as the 29-year-old striker continues to use his status to help raise money for charities which help young children struggling back in Sierra Leone.
Kamara is now a charity ambassador in his homeland and has teamed up with organization CAFOD to help tackle poverty back home.
“Charity work is great, being given a talent to be able to do something and then give back to what the kids is huge work for me,” Kamara told Sky Sports news in an interview. “It puts a smile on my face to see the kids sending me Facebook message and saying thank you for this, it is huge.”
Aside from the brutal reality of life growing up in Sierra Leone, Kamara discussed ‘Boro’s playoff hopes, as the Teeside club sit 11 points behind the playoff spots with Leeds United visiting this Saturday. The attacker has scored four times in 20 games this season, as the former PL team have struggled to find the back of the net of late. Can they still make a late charge for promotion?
“It is possible, we are not too far away from it but at the same time the teams below us are not too far away. It is a tough task for everyone,” Kamara said. “For us all we have to do is control what we can and get points in our hands.”
The man who so often showed off his heart-shaped hands will be hoping he can help write another chapter in his remarkable story by leading Middlesbrough back to the Premier League. This season may be too much to ask, but as Kamara knows more than most, anything in life is possible.
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