Best wins for this team are off the field

Listening to shouts of encouragement and seeing teammates share a laugh, this could be any football training session.

The drills are the same, the skills are sound - only the security guards stick out.

Coach Warren Campbell, a forward for North Melbourne in the 1990s, calls the team into a huddle and leads a spirited chant.

"Who are we? Who are we? Swans! Swans!"

Training ends, but the players do not drive home to rest. They cannot.

They are prisoners living at Wooroloo Prison Farm and playing for Swan Districts in the WA Amateur Football League.

A former Aboriginal Legal Aid liaison and probation and parole officer, Mr Campbell has plenty of experience with the justice system.

He joined Swans two years ago, bringing passion as co-ordinator of the jail-based New Horizons program.

The old Wooroloo team was kicked out of the Mercantile Football Association after a dominant 2009.

"When the team was initially put together, the focus was on winning, winning, winning and I didn't see the program like that," he said.

"It's more about teaching them to be better people, rather than better players."

Though Mr Campbell stressed his focus was personal development, he said the players preferred to win.

"They just go crazy," he said. "It's really uplifting."

The West Australian

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