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Great Falls students break ground on another "High School House"

Posted at 10:25 AM, Sep 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-03 12:25:31-04

The large pile of dirt on the empty lot in the 1500 block of 3rd Avenue is the beginning of what will be the 43rd house that Great Falls high school students have built.

They are taking some safety precautions this time around because of the coronavirus, but they are looking forward to getting started.

After a few speeches from organizers, students from Great Falls high schools picked up shovels and posed for pictures Wednesday in front of the large pile of dirt that marks the beginning of their months-long project to build a 1,200-square foot home.

"I've just wanted to build stuff all my life. I've had a knack for it ever since I was a little kid. I heard about it and wanted to do it,” said junior Kohl Beare. "Honestly, I'm just looking to learn some life skills, see if I can do this, if it's something I want to do in the future."

"This is a great program, definitely serves the community and provides these kids with skills that can get them right into the job force and put them to work,” said High School House instructor Pete Pace.

NeighborWorks started this program in 1998. "It enables us to, at the end of this build, to be able to offer it, many times, to somebody from modest means that go through some of our Neighborworks programs — our home buyer education, our lending program for down payment assistance — to get into the home and become a homeowner,” said Neighborworks director Sherrie Aery.

The house is expected to be complete in May.