Lawrence Cann Will Mazzuto'T.K.' Tokunbo Ajiboye
In the documentary HOME GAME, Suzannah Herbert follows the 2010 season of the a New York City soccer team comprised of homeless individuals. These homeless players unite as a community on the soccer field each week on New York City's Ward Island as part of a national league, called Street Soccer USA (SSUSA), coordinated by a group of volunteer coaches. Lawrence Cann and Robert Cann founded the program back in North Carolina with three teams at a soup kitchen they worked at in their backyard. Over the years, the program grew nationally and is currently comprised of over eighteen homeless teams across the United States. The SSUSA program uses the power of soccer to help homeless men and women transform their lives on and off the field by providing access to job training, specialized services, and life skills, which ultimately connect participants directly to jobs, educations, and family. Herbert focuses on two players, TK and Anthony, who both came to the United States to pursue a better quality of life, but due to difficult economic times and lack of resources, they fell subject to homelessness. TK came to the United States at the age of nineteen from Nigeria and was unable to maintain a job during the recession. Anthony, a realtor of twelve years, was forced to foreclose on his house after struggling to pay his mortgage. Both needed to seek housing in New York City shelters, where they were connected to Street Soccer USA programming. HOME GAME explores the lives of these homeless players and how SSUSA has used soccer to create positive change in their lives. In our society, there are many negative generalizations associated with being homeless. HOME GAME seeks to give audiences a more realistic and usually unknown perspective on why some individuals are homeless.