Moving Windmills Project

Fuelling African innovation

From the inspiring tale of a simple windmill that sparked a movement, the Moving Windmills Project continues to fuel youthful resilience and ingenuity in Kasungu, Malawi. Rooted in purpose and community, we are committed to revolutionising problem-solving for more sustainable and innovative futures.

Empowering a generation of change makers. From Malawi, to the world…

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Your support is greatly needed and appreciated.

In Malawi, a country facing immense challenges — from climate hardships to educational barriers — every contribution you make becomes a catalyst for extraordinary change. By supporting us, you are part of a powerful movement to turn adversity into opportunity, actively participating in a transformative journey that reshapes lives and communities.

Building community. Empowering creative problem-solvers.

Since its founding in 2008, inspired by William Kamkwamba’s inventive spirit, the Moving Windmills Project has emerged as a leader in ethical, hands-on development in Malawi. With nearly two decades of experience, our unique approach combines sustainable, circular, and human-centered design, not just offering, but cultivating solutions from within the community to build a lasting legacy.

For nearly two decades, Moving Windmills has:

  • Built low-cost water wells with percussion drilling.
  • Installed solar powered pumps and energy systems.
  • Renovated local schools with new facilities and learning materials.
  • Fostered sustainable farming, nutrition and community programs.

Malawi is a youthful country — nearly 50% is under the age of 25.

Its burgeoning population is poised for growth and brimming with potential yet confronted by an under-resourced education system and climate-stressed agricultural practices. Moving Windmills leverages this youthful energy, fostering resilience through practical experiential learning, sustainable agri-tech, and renewable energy solutions. By equipping the next generation to overcome socio-economic and climate change hurdles, we are nurturing emphatic proactive leaders ready to shape tomorrow’s future.


50% of Malawians are under the age of 25


67% of eligible Malawians will not finish primary school


80% of Malawians are subsistence farmers

Phase Zero:

Community Development in Kasungu

Phase Zero lays the essential groundwork in Kasungu, preparing for a future where innovation flourishes. Moving Windmills recognises that impactful change begins with sustained access to basic needs. Shaped by active community dialogue, this long-term project is about more than quick fixes—it’s a steadfast dedication to installing the foundational infrastructure for essential utilities, education, and mentorship. By establishing the vital infrastructure for community development, we plant the seeds necessary for the next steps in self-empowerment and creativity:

  • Multifunctional hubs to transform learning environments
  • Life essentials, art and sports to strengthen community ties
  • Educational and vocational routes to enhance mentorship pathways
  • Exchanges and practical training to cultivate collaborations

As we lay each foundation of opportunity, your support cements our progress. Join us.

Phase One:

Innovation and a Global Connection

The progression to the Moving Windmills Innovation Center from Phase Zero’s community hubs highlights a strategic evolution towards a more unified system—a heart—while still continuing Phase Zero’s critical groundwork. This experiential learning center emerges as a nexus for innovation, offering a space for mentorship, collaboration, and international exchanges. It’s designed to empower African innovators with the tools, skills and opportunities necessary for solving local challenges, ensuring our project’s sustainability and reinforcing the community’s cohesive fabric through scalable, self-reliant solutions. Learn more about our mission and vision by watching this short film created with MASS Design.

The Innovation Center will:

  • Convene students, mentors, and the broader community to forge innovative solutions for African challenges.
  • Foster strategic partnerships with organisations and individuals aligned with our mission.
  • Boost Malawi’s economy by establishing an incubator that fosters innovation and entrepreneurship, becoming the region’s center for development.
  • Be an exemplary model for collaborative learning and human-centered design.
  • Offer a foundational headquarters for Moving Windmills’ initiatives, anchoring our activities and vision.

William’s Story

When William Kamkwamba was 14, Malawi suffered a severe famine. His family could no longer pay his school fees, and he was forced to drop out of high school. While staying home, William remained curious and inventive and worked with the village librarian to stay engaged with his studies, especially science. Working from just one photo in a U.S. junior high school textbook book called “Using Energy,” he reasoned out how to build an electricity-producing windmill from spare parts and scrap, despite having no instructions.  William’s inspiring story is told in his New York Times bestselling memoir The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, co-authored with Bryan Mealer, and in the Netflix film adaptation, directed by Chiwetel Ejiofor, which was awarded the Alfred P. Sloan Prize at the Sundance Film festival. Since its debut, William’s book has been published in two additional editions, a young readers version, and a children’s book. The autobiography has sold more than 1 million copies and been translated in nearly twenty languages worldwide. William has been featured on The Wall Street Journal, Nyasa Times, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, and Good Morning America with Diane Sawyer.  After graduating from Dartmouth College in Environmental Studies, William began work as a Global Fellow for the design firm William is an entrepreneur, TED Fellow, and has worked with the WiderNet Project to develop appropriate technologies curriculums focused on bridging the gap between “knowing” and “doing” for young people in Malawi and across the world. William splits his time between the U.S. and Malawi and is currently working full-time with the Moving Windmills Project to bring the Moving Windmills Innovation Center to life in Kasungu, Malawi.

For speaking engagements, please contact us.


The Boy Who Harnassed the Wind was adapted into a feature film by Netflix, directed by and starring Chiwetel Ejifor, with Maxwell Simba starring as William.
When a terrible drought struck William’s village in Malawi, his family lost all of the season’s crops, leaving them with nothing to eat and nothing to sell. William began to explore science books in his village library, looking for a solution. There, he came up with the idea that would change his family’s life forever: he could build a windmill. William dreamed of bringing his small village the luxuries that only two percent of Malawians enjoy: electricity and running water. His neighbors called him misala — crazy — but William refused to let go of his dreams. With a pile of once-forgotten science textbooks, some scrap metal, tractor parts, and bicycle halves — and armed with curiosity and determination — he embarked on a daring plan to forge an unlikely contraption, a small miracle that would change the lives around him. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is a remarkable true story about human inventiveness and its power to overcome crippling adversity. It will inspire anyone who doubts the power of one individual’s ability to change his community and better the lives of those around him. Some curriculum resources are gathered here. For press and other info about the book, please click here.

Your support is greatly needed and appreciated.

In Malawi, a country facing immense challenges — from climate hardships to educational barriers — every contribution you make becomes a catalyst for extraordinary change. By supporting us, you are part of a powerful movement to turn adversity into opportunity, actively participating in a transformative journey that reshapes lives and communities.