Crew SC forward Kei Kamara and Philadelphia Union midfielder Michael Lahoud are the recipients of the 2015 FIFPro Merit Award. The two Major League Soccer stars were recognized for their involvement in the Schools for Salone project, which builds schools in their native country of Sierra Leone.
Kamara and Lahoud began their charity work for Schools for Salone in 2010 and ultimately funded their own school near Freetown. The Kei Kamara and Michael Lahoud Education for All Primary School opened on September 7, 2015 to over 50 students. It is expected to grow to more than 100 students.
FIFPro is a worldwide organization representing more than 65,000 soccer players in total. The World Players’ Union currently has 58 national players’ associations as their members.
Both Kamara and Lahoud escaped the civil in Sierra Leone as children. Kamara fled when he was 16 through a refugee program. Learn more about his journey from civil war to soccer stardom in these terrific features:
- ESPN - We made it: Kamara's journey to MLS
- VICE Sports - From civil war to the top of MLS
- MLS Insider - Kei Kamara's long journey home
For his dedication to the Schools for Salone project and for sharing his personal story with children in the community, Kamara has also been recognized as both the OhioHealth Humanitarian of the Year and the MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year presented by Advocare.