Alphonso Davies has come a long way from a refugee camp in Ghana to playing for Bayern Munich. Now, the 20-year-old football pro has been named "goodwill ambassador" by UN refugee agency UNHCR.
Alphonso Davies, one of the rising stars on the squad of FC Bayern Munich football club, joins the likes of Ben Stiller, Cate Blanchett and Yusra Mardini: On Wednesday (March 24), the 20-year-old became the latest special envoy of the UN refugee agency UNHCR.
The defender of Germany's most successful soccer club is the first professional soccer player worldwide to take on this role. "I'm honoured to become a Goodwill Ambassador for UNHCR and to speak up for @refugees everywhere," Davies said on Twitter.
The task of the currently 37 "Goodwill Ambassadors," as UNHCR calls them, is to "help to bring our organization to every corner of the world through their influence, dedication and hard work."
Born in a refugee camp
"Alphonso Davies personifies the power of sport and we are truly honored to have him joining us. Sport has the incredible power to bring hope, to heal and to help shape the future for those forced to flee. In our work with refugees we see daily what uplifting difference sports can make in their lives," UNHCR chief Filipo Grandi said in an online statement published on Wednesday.
Born in 2000 in a refugee camp in Ghana shortly after his parents fled Liberia, the family was able to leave the camp for Canada when Davies was five. There, Alphonso was able to start school and sign up to a soccer club in the town of Edmonton.
His parents found work and were busy bringing up their three children. Alphonso proved so talented as a footballer that he was scouted by a training center for the professional team Whitecap in Vancouver, where he quickly excelled. By 2016, at the age of just 15, he was already playing for the professional team.
The following year, Alphonso was granted Canadian nationality and just a few days later, on June 13, 2017, he was called up to play for the Canadian national team in a friendly against Curaçao.
On January 1, 2019, Alphonso Davies arrived in Munich to play for FC Bayern. Four months later, he became the youngest goalscorer the club had ever had at the age of 18 years, 4 months and 15 days.