Straight Outta Brampton: Soccer Outside the Six

{rapping} The summer with a gun past my city limits
within me sit in on killas. I feel as if any minute that the
next one to take aim straight all on the same stage just wait. Page James Holmes names known or following the American narrative if they were Arabic they would be a labeled
a para terrorist or gang member if black… I’ve come to Toronto a bunch of
times now, but originally to document how TFC started at the
bottom and finished at the top, MLS Cup Champions. I began to become interested in
Jonathan Osorio and his story putting on for his
city Brampton, Ontario. {Reporter}Jonathan, you told me proudly you
are born and bred in Toronto. Born and bred from Toronto. I grew up in Brampton, shut out to
Brampton, cause Brampton made me. Who I am today. He gave a shout on national TV to Brampton. And I was like “Oh Brampton.” Everyone’s like
“Brampton, Brampton?
what’s that?”. Yeah. I feel Brampton a bit, kind of as an underdog mentality. People would diss us for being here.
It’s like OK we’re from here, and we’re going to claim, it we’re
going to be proud of it, and we’re going to build something
here so that you can’t even make jokes about it. As you dig into it Brampton’s a
place that can be misunderstood. Home to a majority of visible minorities which comes with some complicated stereotypes. A lot of brown people they call it
“Browntown”. They call it, “Browntown?”. Yeah. Sometimes Brampton gets referred to
as a ghetto. A lot of that goes back to racial connotations, in some sense. You know a lot of those small businesses that you see there from immigrant families that are entrepreneurs. 70 percent of the population can be considered a visible minority, quote unquote. Indians and Pakistani dominate the
area. But within that, you still see people of all walks of life. Everybody says that Brampton is such
a bad place, and this and that. If you go and find that troubling
you’ll find it, but honestly like you do your thing and mind your
business and you stay out of that I think
Brampton is a good place to go up. And as I started digging a little
bit deeper I started to figure he wasn’t the only one. Doneil Henry, Nick Lindsay, Cyle Larin, then on the woman’s side you got Kadeisha Buchanan. Ashley Lawrence use to play for
Brampton. Basketball you got Tristan Thompson. NBA champion. People like Tyler Ennis, Tristan Thompson, Jason Bent, Atiba Hutchison, Paul Stalteri, Iain Hume. Yeah, it’s kind of crazy the amount
of players that come from Brampton. Why am I going to totally forget
about Brampton when it’s the place that bred me you know? Brampton made me hungry. So with Jonathan Osorio now getting his moment to shine as a star in MLS, Kadeisha Buchanan already won with the Women’s National Team and Canada, Toronto getting an
opportunity to host the Men’s World Cup. I figured now was the right time to come to B-town, Brampton to understand how soccer, culture, and music are bubbling up here just a little bit outside the 6. I see you rocking the Colombia
shirt, were in an Italian restaurant. I was hanging out at a Jamaican
spot, there was a Portuguese bar down the
street that I was watching MLS at the the
other day. Brampton’s got a little bit of
everything. My mom’s from Medellin and my dad from Caisson, which is a little town outside of
Cali. In the house, you’re still in Colombia. It’s on the outside of the house
that you go and you’re in Canada. My dad came to Canada when he was I think he was 12, 13, 14 years old. His parents brought the kids here to have a better life but, they brought them here and then they went back home. They left the kids here, and I think the oldest kid was 18 years old and he had to work. It’s probably like a lot of immigrant, immigrants here is similar. When they had me, they had me in Toronto. We came to Brampton when I think I was six years old. Why did they end up moving from
Toronto to Brampton? Financially it was just better to find a place out here in Brampton. It was like a new area. This was a very new area for a decent price. And then when I got to high school
actually a lot of my friends were Jamaicans. It’s nice, it blends in when it comes to sports and especially football. Everybody has a little something different to this. And I think, that only made it more competitive more than anything. How would you describe Jonathan as a player? Hungry. He’s got a real appetite for the game. Jason Bent is an OG in Canada Soccer. One of the first Canadians
ever to sign with MLS He’s worked at every level at
Toronto FC from the academy, to the first team, and is a Brampton native himself. He’s always had those light feet, and quick feet, and because he’s so comfortable with the ball and he’s got a little bit of wiggle to create some space for himself. I use to only go to play futsal. So a lot of Latinos, we had our own futsal league. That’s where the wiggle came from. I went to a school that had a like a
lockdown every month. There was bad stuff happening. And made me experience things that
maybe some other guys didn’t. It’s a Catholic school, a public school. There basically right, These two fields away from each
other. But at lunchtime they’re warring. There’s fighting. There’s all kinds of stuff but there are soccer programs are
unbelievable. It was a big hip hop culture. I think at my school. And now you know that’s kind of what I listen to now and it’s shaped me, it’s really shaped me. And now with artists like Drake and Weekend and Bieber is just exploding. And because you know the ship of Toronto is starting to rise. Now the waves the surrounding areas
are starting to rise now as well. So we’re kind of like the ripple
effect. Brampton’s the ninth largest city in
Canada, but it seems like a suburban town you’d see essentially anywhere. Until look a step closer and you see in the strip malls, one next to another, a different type of food, a different ethnicity, different
culture, so… Noyz is a rapper that brings all of those things, his culture, his heritage, and his pride together through his music. A common thread between a lot of Brampton residents, they grew up the same way. So we’re dealing with a lot of recent waves of immigration. You know a lot of parents were
probably born in other places of the world. And so the kids here are kind of getting that balance as far as, I’m born here in North America, I’m born here in Canada but my parents were born somewhere else. So how do I kind of balance these
two mentalities, how do I balance these two cultures? and try to bring them together and make sense of them. I was talking to Jonathan, wearing a Colombia shirt, family’s from Colombia repping, but also plays for the Canadian national team. Proud of both. I think what we tend to miss when we
talk about multiculturalism is that, there are reasons behind migration, whether there’s displacement, whether it’s because of war or whether it’s because of poverty. Whatever the case may be. And when you’re here growing up among that, you know you can’t help but be exposed to other people’s
stories. You never talk against the
government. Because if you do, there’s a saying
that you get “hidden behind the moon.”. If you try to speak up, freedom of speech is not accepted there. And that’s what’s happening. In Syria. It’s our duty I think, as Canadians. To lend a helping hand to those that need it. We have the capacity to, you know, help other countries. So it’s not about invading another person’s country and taking over their oil. It’s about how about lending a helping hand and get them help they need to get out. Of the 900 Syrian refugees that have come to the Greater Toronto Area, over 200 have come to Mississauga and 48 Brampton in the last year or so. I met up with Neeven Faress someone
who had been talking to for a while about her
project with the Syrian Eagles to discover how these Syrian refugees are making
a home here. What was the experience like for the team to be able to go to TFC, meet players like Dwayne DeRosario and also be there for the championship run and at the MLS Cup Final? So they came with their traditional tublas and their flags and everything and they made their signs and one of them was thanking Treadeau, like thank you Treadeau. So they were very appreciative of that. The language of soccer. That’s really what it is, right?. We noticed that there was a lack of programs for the men. Like the adult males. You see things for women, you see things for kids. But, really nothing community based for the males to integrate. So I have, I have… nurses. I have doctors. I have engineers. I have teachers. And unfortunately coming here, this is the difficulty is that you need the Canadian experience. So having that resume to qualify you an education to qualify you to perform these careers here. They’re trying to support their families. So they’re picking any kind of job. A lot of them are delivery boys, pizza delivery boys. Evening taxi drivers. And I’ve got to tell you Brampton’s even populated and income there like for even just rentals is high. You have to think even going further out of the city. There was a lot of single mothers that moved from like inner city areas in the Toronto to get away from that and go to out to Brampton. It used to be a really nice place to kind of, affordable housing. Raise your family. I was born in Toronto. I can say, like the ghetto. So when I was about five six. Brampton was more of a better way for me and my sisters because it wasn’t a good area for us to be growing up in. I’m the youngest of my seven, of my six sisters. So it’s like a dog eat dog like you always want to be better. Wait. How many sisters? I have six sisters. So I always, we’re always fighting, who can do the most keep-ups. Who can shoot harder, who can dribble, like we could score the most. So. I was just in that competitive
environment and I think that actually elevated my game. My mom wanted us to get out and go to Brampton, and play like find a sport to keep us out the streets and stuff like that. My dad was around like he’s been around in games but other than like the pitch, he had his own family as well. So my mom was more worrying about, like, how am I going to get to soccer? What are we going to eat tonight? Like those type of thoughts that was running through her head as as a single mother with seven kids. So it was difficult. We really had to survive as a family. How was I going to pay for the next
season. And people like, “Oh like you you’re, oh she didn’t pay”. And you just, you don’t feel, you don’t feel like welcome. And I’m just, I don’t have any part to do with it. I can’t help the situation that I’m in.” In tough moments, or in great moments, ever think back to some of those early days in Brampton that has gotten you to where you are now? Yeah, I mean, the anthems playing. And you just look at the crowd and you just brought your family there, you just want to cry. Because, they’ve been through the struggle with you. And now people are inspired to be you. And I know your family comes. Like. Everywhere. Matches on the road, CONCACAF Champions League, Mexico. The whole thing. That was one of the best moments of my career. Seeing them in Mexico for the final. They have never traveled to such lengths. I had a moment, I know I had a big moment during the warm-up. I’m living my dream and I’m living a dream a lot of Canadian kids can’t say they’ve done. I guess in that moment just I reminisced on everything that it took for me to be here and everything they’ve sacrificed for me to be here because they sacrificed a lot. It was tough. And to have them there was like, was a dream. A dream come true for real. You know the world cup is coming in
2026. Honestly right now, I’m just looking to Qatar 2022 because also like I want to be the one to say like I helped Canada. We qualified, we qualified. You know we made the hex. We were top four in CONCACAF. And that’s why we’re at the World
Cup. That’s what I want to say. Guess so I still want the gold World Cup. The gold Olympics. So I think that’s, the hunger still there to keep pushing, keep being a better me and a athlete, player, person. I mean I feel like I owe it to them. Brampton, you know. It’s where I grew up most of my life. Yeah, I play for Toronto and Brampton is Toronto. Brampton is part of Toronto. In that sense I have to shout it
out. I have to. What’s this? The key! This is the infamous key. It is my honor on behalf of the Bramptonians toward you the key of the city of Brampton. That’s what’s up. {Crowd chanting} “Oso!” “Oso!” “Oso!” People, people from New York, don’t just say I’m from New York. They are very territory like, “Yo,
I’m from Bronx, I’m from Brooklyn, I’m from Queens. Right?” And like why can’t we have that here
as well? Like why can’t we rep our specific neighborhood that we’re from without having to default to largest major city? Coming from a place like Brampton, and it’s not small. Like, It’s not like coming from
Timbuktu. No, coming from Brampton, that’s
pretty strong like, if your from Brampton, you are pretty athletic. Coming from Brampton. No, coming from Brampton like you know oh he’s from Brampton. OK. He’s good. Kind of like that bragging rights, like people here, like bragging rights is a big thing here. When you win. When you win, you get talked about. People strive to get that feeling. The whole time I’m thinking like
“I’m sick too”. They just don’t know. That’s the culture here, that’s the
culture I grew up in. I think that’s the Brampton culture. You know if we can corner the market just B-town represent and take over then I’m all for it. You know we can put our talent up
against any other part of the world. We believe in ourselves that much. You know “Browntown”, “Brownladesh.” People just look at it like a very surface level. Yeah like a lot of brown people live
there, a lot of South Asians live there. But if you go deeper into it there’s
like literally every part of the world converges here. And for the large part coexists here is trying to do something great here. To see someone like Jonathan and say hey he’d from here, it can make dreams feel tangible. {rapping} Following the path, what
it leads to. Is still wallowing in the glass maze with a bleak view. Can’t serve my cap as matter of fact word to Killer Mike I’m trying to
murder my masters. Looking back at the World Cup, or looking forward to the one coming. Much of the talk on player development centers around black and brown communities playing in the biggest of cities in the inner cities. But look no further than the Boys from the Banlieues in France to understand some of the best players
in the world often come from refugee and immigrant backgrounds in the
cities outside the cities. Well Brampton is that place, and is that underdog story. But, if Oso and Kadiesha have anything to say about it. It might not be the underdog for
long. {rapping} In fact backwards I’m
throwing dirt on my Caspers clash with mind, body, and spirit but adapted. The fact is in the elements after
trading my path instead of dwelling with my head in the past and developing the veteran statue.

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