BUTTE – After almost two years without a homeless shelter, the Butte Rescue Mission is a step closer to having a new shelter.
“It just is, it’s getting very exciting, we’re getting very close to the end,” said Mission Executive Director Rocky Lyons.
The units are being put in place for the new shelter at the end of East Platinum Street in Uptown, which will house 56 people and include a low-barrier unit to give intoxicated people temporary shelter from the cold.
They will convert this warehouse into offices and use it for programs to help their residents get out of homelessness.
“We believe that you can feed and shelter people all day long, but until some sort of transformation happens in their life that they have a very low percentage rate of being successful on their own,” said Lyons.
The original shelter on East Second Street was closed in April 2017 due to fire code violations. It’s been an uphill challenge to find a new location and more work needs to be done.
“We need a 500 foot sewer main, two manholes, the power still needs to be brought over to the property and put into the units,” said Lyons.
Initially they were hoping to have this homeless shelter open before the first snow fell, but that didn’t happen due to many delays and maintenance issues. But now shelter officials believe they’ll have it open and running by mid-January.
“Even though it’s taking time to do this, things are being done the proper way. And they’re being done for the long haul. We’re not just trying to open any shelter for a short-term fix for Butte,” said Lyons.
More work to do.
Reporting by John Emeigh for MTN News