As part of going to my school, I have moved to Lilongwe, the capital city of Malawi. I am staying with Gerry Douglas, the founder of Baobab Health Partnership, where I will be working after school. His wife Thuy, a medical doctor, and their six-year-old boy Ben are visiting for a month. I will live in their guest room for at least a couple of months. Gerry and his wife are very warm and caring, and it is comforting to stay with people who have an interest in my future. Gerry is building the new offices for Baobab Health in the back of his property. When finished, the NGO will have a lot more space, which they need desperately. They have outgrown their office on the main grounds of the Kamuzu Hospital in Lilongwe.
Gerry also has something very unusual in his back yard: a "jig" for fashioning steel masts from scratch to hold the WiFi communications antennas that they use to send data back and forth from their office to the hospital and nearby clinics. I know how to do some welding, but I’m hoping to learn more from the Baobab team.
In Lilongwe city, the state utility provider ESCOM’s power cuts out at least once a day, and we use candles and flashlights. I want to build a windmill/battery system for Gerry so that he has power backup without needing a generator, which is expensive, noisy, smelly, and emits pollution. In Wimbe Village in Kasungu, my family’s home has steady power, stored in the deep-power batteries by the windmill.