Bribie Island Butterfly House: The Butterfly Effect

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Have you been to the Bribie Island Butterfly House yet? If not, you are missing out on one of the islands, if not the world’s most exquisite little gems. Yes, it is about the enchanting beauty of butterflies, but also about so much more! You may even relate the simple beauty and colours of the butterflies with complex mathematical, philosophical, and scientific properties entwined throughout the earth and universe…….’the butterfly effect’.

Established and opened in 2017, the Bribie Island Butterfly House is a not-for-profit tourist and educational destination. It is the dream and now the reality of the founders’ Ray & Delphine Archer who retired to the island in 2013 and started breeding butterflies at a residential property in Banksia Beach. Word soon spread and more and more nature lovers got involved with their passion for growing plants, gardening, and breeding butterflies.

In 2016 Bribe Butterfly Volunteers Inc. was formed and plans were underway to build a butterfly house to attract tourists to the island and help raise money to donate to the less fortunate people in Australia and around the world.

Moreton Bay Regional Council designated a block of land and building was underway. Local tradies, sponsors and volunteers donated their time, money, and skills to construct the magnificent facility we have today which has welcomed 70,000 visitors from around the world and allowed us to donated $300,000 to charities locally and abroad.

Projects like this help people reconnect with the beauty and importance of our natural world. We hope to encourage an awareness of our delicate ecosystems and natural habitats and to prevent their ongoing destruction. Everyone can start in their own backyard and help bring back the butterflies, plant trees and influence positive change for our environment, the earth and all its creatures.

The facility consists of the breeding laboratory where the caterpillars grow and can be viewed by guests, food gardens to feed the hungry caterpillars & butterflies, toilets, undercover area, and an enclosure where you can immerse yourself amongst a kaleidoscope of hundreds of butterflies.

It is also wheelchair friendly. To this day the project is run by volunteers and provides a place of peace, education, tranquillity, and fun for everyone who enters. Volunteering is proven to improve people’s mental, physical health and wellbeing. Our Volunteers are trained and continue to learn new skills, while also passing on their knowledge and skills to others. This gives a great sense of purpose and allows the butterfly house to donate 100% of the profits earnt from entry fees to charity. So not only do our volunteers give back to the community and environment, but they also help spread joy, fun and peace to the world. Bribie Island Butterfly House continues to donate around $10,000 per month to many wonderful, trusted partners helping in our ‘global village’. Some examples and we thank these groups for their crucial work helping people in our local community include The Neighbourhood Centre, B.I.K.E.S, Rotary, GIVIT, ‘Pay a Sack Forward’, School Chappies, BIDCA, Bribie Hospice, RizeUp, Global Care, CICADA, Meant to Rise, Wallum Action Group, Bribie Respite, Camp Quality and more….. Helping the homeless, kids at risk, bushfire victims, and drought relief for farming families, emergency assistance, domestic violence victims, food hampers, counselling, help for survivors of sexual abuse, Cochlear Implant recipients, disability support and assistance for cancer patients and their families.

The world is a large place and we certainly live in a lucky country. The project also donates on a more global level via two trusted partners: Entrust Foundation and Empower. This way 100% of the funds donated go directly to helping people who live in some of the toughest parts of the world. This includes some of the most basics we take for granted such as clean drinking water, suitable sanitisation, education, basic life skills, health assistance, help for abuse victims, homelessness, assist communities to achieve economic empowerment, emergency relief in times of disaster and stopping human trafficking. There is a huge list and you can find out how this project helps further on the website www. bribieislandbutterflyhouse.org. This brings us back to the ‘butterfly effect’ and ‘chaos theory’. The world is a very chaotic place…..filled with both beauty and trepidation. To think a seed (both physical and metaphorical) can be planted and grow to feed the larvae that metamorphose into magical butterflies or how the seed of an idea can develop into a community project like this and offer transformational hope to people locally and on the other side of the world cannot be underestimated. The small flap of a butterfly’s wing at Bribie Island can influence a large change across the planet……a tornado of hope. Whether you contribute a little or a lot we thank you!