Alistair Macquarie and Shane Napa teamed up to form a fire brigade in response to the first round of arson attacks on Rarotonga.
They cobbled together old fire-fighting equipment to get started and later Macquarie mortgaged his family house to buy a tanker to supply water to the fire truck during callouts.
Japan could see the huge benefits to the community that the fire station offered and under its Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects was the main donor in the construction of the fire station, located in the centre of Titikaveka, next to the Cook Islands Christian Church.
During a ceremony last Saturday where Japan officially handed over two refurbished four-wheel drive pump trucks and a tank truck, landowners representative Rongo Preston said they were tremendously proud of the station and its team of volunteers.
Japan’s Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Iwao Horii said Japan was looking to also contribute a ladder truck to assist with fighting fires in taller buildings on the island.