For those who follow Rory McIlroy on Twitter, the smiling face of the young girl who inspired McIlroy to excel in the US Open may already seem familiar.
The young Haitian girl’s heartbreaking troubles are said to have helped McIlroy better his outlook on life which helped him stay focused and calm during the most grueling times of his competition at the Congressional course in Maryland last weekend.
Six-year-old Daphnie Pierre was among the many affected by the earthquake in Haiti last year and among those affected by the poor condition the country is currently in. Daphnie lost her father during the quake and it left her mother severely injured as well. The family has lost their form of income and is forced to live under dreadful conditions.
The family lives in a small shelter near a large sewer and relies solely on charity and donations to survive. The golf star had the chance to meet the radiant child during his visit to Haiti with Unicef as an ambassador earlier this month.
“I think it had a huge perspective on how I handled myself throughout the tournament last week because it gave me a huge dose of perspective on everything, not just golf but life in general,” said McIlroy.
He was largely impacted by his visit and even tweeted to his 400,000 followers about the experience:
"Still can't believe how great the spirit of the kids are there!"
A smiling and cheerful Daphnie is photographed as she is being held by Rory on his default image on his Twitter account. Daphnie is one of millions of children devastated by the Haiti earthquake.
“The conditions people are living in there are terrible. If I can go and see that then it is good for me and it is also good to raise awareness for what is going on out there.”
Rory McIlroy’s involvement with Unicef and with these causes could spark other sport stars who are more than able to take part in lending a hand, to do so.