The innovative program of 'Building Futures' showcased their two finished homes on May 26.

The two homes located in the community of the Willows were a collaborative effort between students of Cochrane High and Bow Valley High, as well as Kingsmith Homes.

The Building Futures program started the building process in November and wrapped up the third week in May.

Anthony Battistone, teacher at Bow Valley High School says the work would not be possible without the guidance of Craig Wiens, owner of Kingsmith Homes.

"Without Craig and Kingsmith this wouldn't be possible, they are fantastic. The tradesmen and the contractors that come in here are just superb, they work with the kids so well, without them these kids wouldn't be doing 85% of the work. These tradespeople they put trust in these kids to actually do the flooring, the framing, the cabinets rather than just having kids stand back and watch."

Battistone shares, the benefits the program provides is unreal.

"A lot of these kids aren't your traditional student where they can't sit in a desk for 6 hours doing sheet work, this gives them an opportunity to do something different not only build two house but learn it in their own way. "

Out of 23 students only 4 were ladies this year, Hope Perry Grade 10 student from Bow Valley High is hoping that number will grow.

"What we are trying to do is show other girls it's okay to be involved with trades and it's not something that's not normal."

Sheryl Dhlodhlo also in Grade 10 at Bow Valley High says while her future calling may not be working in a trade, the experience has taught her a lot.

"I don't think I will go into a trade but definitely consider something like it because getting to learn stuff like that really opened up my eyes to all the different opportunities I could do."

Perry adds her biggest highlight of the program was gaining knowledge through hands on experience.

"Just being able to see everything and how everything is done; so in the future even if you want to build your own house or fix something in your own house, you have the skills in order to do that."

The ladies shared that although there were only four of them in the program they were equally strong and skilled as the boys. They agreed this experience will also help them in the future.

"Seeing how this entire house was built and how you know what is wrong and what is not wrong, so I have a feeling when I go to get my own house I am going to realize everything that is wrong and not good. I am going to want it all perfect because I know how to build an entire house."

Battistone adds the hope is to grow and evolve the program, and next year they will. Building Futures will be adding Springbank to join them and the class is set to have 29 students involved in next year's build with Kingsmith Homes.

One of the two homes is already sold, and Battistone feels it won't take long for the other to sell as well.