Proyecto Alcatraz arose in 2003 in reply to the action of three youths who robbed a security inspector at the Hacienda Santa Teresa. After their arrest they were offered two alternatives: hand back what they had robbed and work for three months in the Hacienda Santa Teresa without pay or go to prison for what they had done.

After giving it some thought, the three young men decided to take the first option but asked that their fellow gang members also be accepted.

Soon after, a second gang, a rival of the first, joined the program. After several weeks working separately, the team in charge of Proyecto Alcatraz decided that the rival gangs should face each other so that they might resolve their differences both collectively and individually.

In this process, the practice of rugby has shown to be a powerful tool for transformation as it includes the values of respect, discipline, teamwork, fair play and humility, so fundamental in sport as in life itself.