The Full Value Contract

by Andrea Wackerle

Many of our first time parents ask what makes our approach different and what are some of the things we do to help manage common ADHD behaviors. A staple throughout every SOAR course is the Full Value Contract. We understand that power and control can be a challenging concept for many of our campers, so from day one, we give them an opportunity to play a major role in their success at SOAR through the creation of the Full Value Contract. These agreements are created by each group at the beginning of each course. In addition to our basic expectations, campers discuss and create expectations for the entire group to maintain throughout the course. As a group, it is imperative to follow through with the expectations and hold each other accountable. The following are four agreements every SOAR group should honor. The remaining expectations are created by the group.

  1. We will treat each other, ourselves, and our surroundings with respect.
  2. We will have relationships with our teammates that are appropriate friendships and that respect physical boundaries.
  3. We will use appropriate language at all times.
  4. We will be safe and have fun.

The Full Value Contract is designed to encourage each camper to accept, value, and agree to adhere to the expectations that are set. Because each individual has a say in these expectations, there is a clear boundary and understanding of what is expected from day one and places everyone on the same, even playing field from the start.The Full Value Contract is also meant to hold each person accountable in the group for the following:

  1. Valuing the gifts they bring to the table
  2. Valuing the gifts others bring to the table
  3. Respecting the expectations each team member has regarding behavior

Once all expectations have been agreed upon and everyone in the group clearly understands the agreement, each member will sign the contract. If at any point someone violates an expectation of the contract, we will refer to the contract and decided from there what the next course of action should be.

We also recommend transforming the concept into a Family Constitution and implementing it at home. A Family Constitution provides a framework for everyone to discuss and record expectations, responsibilities, and guidelines that are central to the family function. Having frequent family meetings to revisit and/or revise the Family Constitution will also ensure that all ideas and feelings are heard and that the family unit is holding all members accountable.