16 year old Abdiwahab takes advantage of his talent to integrate in Denmark. In 2016 he won North Zealand Championships in street football. Now he is training other asylum seeker children while he is waiting for the decision from the Immigration Service.
Everyone in the asylum center Gribskov knows Abdiwahab very well. They have seen him in the television but also in the center. Abdiwahab is very famous in Somalia because he was playing in the National Youth Football team when he lived there. He is from the capital of Somalia, Mogadishu, but now he is an unaccompanied minor in Denmark. Since he arrived to Denmark last year he has impressed everyone with his talent and his love to football. In 2016 he won North Zealand Championship, which has been a great experience for Abdiwahab.
His talent costed him a lot in his country
Abdiwahab has been playing football since the age of 13. He has developed his technique in the streets of Mogadishu, but unfortunately he had some bad experience.
“One day when I was playing football the soldiers joined me and were very impressed. I got a trophy and a chance to became a player of the National Youth Football team. But one day everything became a nightmare. The militia was looking for me and they killed my father and my sister. I was forced to escape from my country”, he tells while he rubs his hands.
During the interview Peter, who is his contact person, entered to the room and you could clearly see the smile on Abdiwahab’s face. He greeted Peter and told us that Peter has helped him a lot. Peter has helped Abdiwahab to move to his own apartment in Hillerød and to become a player in the football club in Hillerød. Peter is an inspiration to Abdiwahab, he says.
Talent as the key to integration
“It was really hard in the beginning to come to a new country but my talent has been the key to integration in Denmark. For me the only way to become a part of Danish Society is through football. It is much easier to find friends this way. Now I have friends who I hang out with”, Abdiwahab says.
“My new life has been giving me opportunities. I am cooking for myself and do volunteer jobs. I train other kids in football in the asylum center every sunday”, he says with a big smile in his eyes.
Even though Abdiwahab is very active, he do not think that he has reached his big dream yet. His goal is to become a professional football player and also to start an education.
Abdiwahab recommends to other children to focus on their dreams even though it is hard to live without family. He believes that the Danes, who are taking care of him, will help him to reach his dream of becoming a professional football player in Denmark.