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Our new Generator
Thursday, 28 August 2008 Written by fra Ivica Perić

generatorLast night we enjoyed a great feast. Once again we are going to have power for lights and machines! We finally received our new generator. As you may realize, here in the village of Kivumu we do not have any electricity. We have to use a generator to supply the needs of the school, the medical dispensary, the parish church, two convents for the sisters and our friary, as well as numerous other buildings in the local area. Up until last year, we had a small generator, which was installed by fra Vjeko in 1992. It worked fine until it got old and broke down and was impossible to repair because we could not find spare parts (the generator was made in England in 1982). We had been desperately looking for funding for a new generator and the Croatian communities in Canada and Australia came to the rescue and they generously supported us in buying a new one.

In Rwanda the cost of generators are very expensive, so it was necessary to go to Uganda to purchase the new one (the price was less than one third the cost of one in Rwanda). But getting it across the border was another question…. bureaucratic complications arose and our generator spent more than two months in Kigali while an almost insurmountable amount of paperwork was required. Even though Rwanda is in East African Union, and even though we should not have had to pay any taxes, we ended up paying various taxes that cost us almost as much as it cost for the generator itself! But the good news is that we still paid much less than it would have cost us to buy it here in Rwanda.

And now it has finally arrived “home”. The next challenge was to move it into secure premises and to have it hooked up. The entrance for the old quarters that housed the former generator was too small, so the door frame had to be demolished so the new one could fit inside. But at long last, we are set to go! We are so pleased to finally be able to once again hear the roar of the machine starting up – giving us the pleasure of power so we can have light, students can watch the videos for their school programs, the machines will have electricity and the dispensary facilities will once again be able to operate. And we will even be able to enjoy hearing news and music from our radios!! Thanks to everyone who has helped us, life is good and we are enjoying our new noisy friend!

Father Vjeko Center

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