S.O.A.R. is an acronym for Sexual Offender Accountablity and Responsibility.

If you have additional questions about the program, please feel free to contact us:

Robert A. Carbo, M.S.
Psychological Services Coordinator
SOAR Program
Harnett Correctional Institution.  #3805
P.O. Box 1569
Lillington, NC 27546
(910) 893-2751 ex. 315 or 370



The S.O.A.R. Program was established by the North Carolina Department of Correction for the treatment of incarcerated sexual offenders. It is based on the tenets that:

(1) deviant sexual behavior is learned, and 

(2) the treatment of sexual offenders involves learning appropriate and responsible social and sexual behavior to substitute for the inappropriate and irresponsible behavior which led to the offense.

      Each offender has a sexual abuse cycle which becomes
habituated and interferes with
the offender's ability to examine alternative responses to the environment.  When the cycle is used as a conceptual frame- work in treatment, the offender is shown how to identify maladaptive responses to the environment as well as ways of interrupting the sexual abuse cycle.

     It is important that the offender understand his cycle,
the relevance of each com- ponent of treatment as it relates to his cycle, and how these techniques are useful in inter- rupting his sexual abuse cycle.  Through psycho- educational modules, behavior techniques and empathy training, S.O.A.R. participants learn that sexually abusive behavior is both controllable and manageable.

Program Overview

S.O.A.R. is located at Harnett Correctional Institution in
Lillington, which is about 35 
miles south of  Raleigh.  SOAR has been operating since January of 1991.  Approximately 72 offenders attend the program per year.  The participants are all housed in the same dormitory, which includes some inmates who are not sex offenders.  S.O.A.R. participants are not segregated from the general population.


Three full-time psychologists: one Mental Health Services Coordinator and two Staff Psychologist II positions; one contractual psychologist; and nine peer counselors.

Criteria for Admission

The offender should:

  • Have a felony conviction for a sexual offense.
  • Be age 21 or above.
  • Be in minimum or medium custody. 
  • Volunteer to participate in the program.
  • Admit guilt for his sexual offense.
  • Not have a severe mental illness.
  • Have a sixth grade reading level or higher.
  • Be willing and able to participate in confrontational groups.

Referral Procedure

The offender should meet with  the unit psychologist.  The psychologist will interview the offender to determine if he meets the above criteria, and then will complete a clinical assessment report.  If the offender is assessed to be a suitable candidate for S.O.A.R. program participation, he is referred to the S.O.A.R. staff, who then select participants for the next S.O.A.R. group.


  • Five days a week for twenty weeks.
  • Classes begin at 8:00 a.m. and continue until 11:00 a.m.
  • Lunch break is from 11:00 a.m. until 12:30 p.m.
  • Class resumes at 12:30 p.m. until 3:30 p.m.
  • Participants attend some evening and weekend activities (e.g., SAA, Family Day).
  • Homework assignments are given for evening hours and weekends.


Theoretical Approach:

Cognitive / Behavioral 

In using the cycle as a conceptual framework for treatment interventions, it is important to understand that there is nothing magical about the cycle.  The offender needs to understand the cycle and how each treatment modality will help him to interrupt this deviant cycle.  We also need to understand that the phases of the cycle are not causal in nature.  That is, events do not cause the sexually deviant behavior but the phases perpetuate the subsequent phases of the cycle in an attempt to compensate for the feelings generated by the offender?s interpretation of events in his life.  In treatment we use the cycle in four ways.

1.   To identify precursors.

2.   To identify historical events which lead to    specific thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. 

3.   To identify daily occurrences in the offender's life which trigger specific responses. 

4.   To identify times and situations in which to insert appropriate coping responses.


                             Modules  Hours

Anger Management-------12
Assertiveness Training-----30
Behavioral Techniques----15
Crime Stories-------------21
Family Roles--------------18
Lab Workbook
Life Skills-----------------13.5
Orientation---------------- 6
Relapse Prevention-------35.5
Relationships &
Sexual Knowledge--------15
Stress Management-------12.5
Team Building------------ 21
Thinking Errors-----------12
Voices of Victims
   (Empathy Training)------54

 We will provide a total of approximately 300 hours of classroom instruction and 300 hours of lab time (for viewing video tapes and completion of assignments).


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