Monday, October 11, 2010

The boy Who Harnessed the wind

The book "The boy Who Harnessed the Wind" was fantastic. It might be of interest to occupational therapists as a case study of ingenuity, the drive toward purposeful activity and overcoming adversity. the boy William Kamkwamba from Malawi Africa was born to be a scientist despite living in a culture that believes in magic, struggled against famine and required students to pay fees in order to attend school. Instead of becoming hopeless when his family could no longer pay the school fees and driven to improve life he reads science books in the library and learns about how to turn wind energy into electricity that can bring electric lighting and irrigation to his family's home and farm.
As the recycling occupational therapist it was exciting to read that he found almost all the materials to make the wind mill in the junk yards, spending countless hours searching through broken machinery to find the needed parts. Being poor he even made makeshift tools such as a screwdriver by flattening out wire and compensated for the wrench being the wrong size by wrapping a bicycle spoke inside the hole to strip off rusted nuts in the scrapyard. It is hard to read about the government corruption, famine and hunger but the reader can be assured that since this book did get written, William succeeded and has the academic support he so much deserves.

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