Required reading

Last Updated: 12:03 AM, October 4, 2009

Posted: 12:03 AM, October 4, 2009

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind

by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer

(William Morrow)

William Kamkwamba, from Malawi, is now 22, an author and attending the prestigious African Leadership Academy in Johannesburg. But growing up in a village with no electricity, he dreamed simply of bringing power to his people. Forced to quit school at 14 — his parents couldn’t afford the $80 tuition — he helped forage for food in the drought-stricken countryside. Refusing to let his dream die, with help from tattered books, he built a windmill out of scraps, bicycle parts and PVC pipes. That first, crude device powered four lights. Another jerry-rigged machine powered a water pump. This is an uplifting story, showing that big change can start small.

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