Butters Homes was created by the Butters Foundation in 1986 to manage the network of homes that the Foundation had purchased or built since its inception in 1976. The Butters Foundation was originally created to purchase homes for the residents of the Butters Centre who were housed in less-then-adequate quarters on the 35-acre campus in Austin, near Lake Memphremagog. This operation was so successful that the board of directors started to feel overwhelmed by the dual responsibility of properly managing a growing number of properties in the Eastern Townships and soliciting potential donors for future projects of that nature. The organizations then split into 2 with directors moving to where they felt more comfortable.
Since 1986 Butters Homes has gone from a maximum of 32 properties to a current number of 17, owing to a reduced need on the part of the Centre for housing. Two of these properties were not even requested by the Centre (CISSSMO). These are a 100-hectare farm in Rougemont along Route 112 and a 15-acre camp property in Frelighsburg, near the US border (see below), both which provide much-needed respite care to families in need. Butters Homes, Inc also has access to grants from the Société de habitation du Quebec (SHQ) and presently has seven properties that receive annual grants of various amounts from the Quebec Government.
Until recently, our public partner had dropped any request for new properties due to budgetary considerations, even in the face of growing wait lists for specialized residential services. However, budgetary restraints have been lifted and the Centre will now need additional adapted homes for clients with special needs. At the same time, the public establishment is in the process of transferring all of its services & installations in the MRCs of Haute-Yamaska & Brome-Missisquoi, (read Granby, Cowansville and environs) to the region of Estrie, adjacent to the east. Since Butters Homes & the Butters Foundation originated from Brome-Missisquoi and points east of Cowansville, this administrative change will challenge both organizations as it adapts to a new reality. Will the Homes have to abandon properties in its traditional territory or adapt to variable arrangements with 2 administrative regions, (i.e. Estrie & Montérégie). Where will it operate in the future? Who will it partner with? What role will the foundation play in all of this? Many questions. Fewer answers at the moment.