Reflections On God And The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind
A few months back I read a book called The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind. The general story is of a boy named William Kamkwamba who’s country, Malawi, faces a famine due to a lack of rain. William finds a book in a school library with pictures of electric windmills, and fascinated by the idea, decides to build his own.
In the book, young William collects parts from a scrapyard, along with other places, and is laughed at by the people in his community who do not understand what he is doing even when he tries to explain.
After a small scale success, William proceeds to build a larger windmill that could generate enough electricity to water his family’s farm. His plan is to use the windmill to power a water pump taken from an old automobile at a scrapyard.
This amount of electricity is not a lot by Western standards. But William understood that his invention could mean the difference between starvation and a life of relative comfort for himself, his family, and his community.
Teen's DIY Energy Hacking Gives African Village New Hope
Some people see lemons and make lemonade. William Kamkwamba saw wind and made a windmill. This might not seem like a…
William continues to try to explain what he is doing to his family and those around him, telling them that his electric windmill would mean that they could grow twice as much food, but people do not understand and call him mad.
As the title implies, William eventually completes the homemade electric windmill out of parts that he was able to salvage from a scrap yard and from a small generator (dynamo) that was previously used to power the light on a bicycle.
Keep in mind that all of these items were available in this poor African community, but this one boy had the insight to put it all together.
William’s windmill turns out to be a huge success and to the amazement of his family and his community, it successfully irrigates the crops on his family’s farm, creating life-saving wealth for his family and those around them.