Tag Archives: Sara Wattles Perry ’77

William Kamkwamba to Speak at Fourth Annual Wattles Perry ’77 Lecture

Mr. Kamkwamba with his windmill in the background (Photo courtesy of HarperCollins)

Malawi is a country struggling to overcome the effects of famine, poverty, and AIDS. The country has limited electricity, their main source of light in rural regions is kerosene lamps; these areas also have little access to running water. However, thanks to the ingenuity of William Kamkwamba, a boy from a farming community, one village was able to overcome these limitations. Mr. Kamkwamba will address the Williston Northampton School in the fourth annual Sara Wattles Perry ’77 lecture, on December 5 at 8:30 a.m. in the Athletic Center.

Forced to leave school when his parents could no longer afford the $80 fee, Mr. Kamkwamba continued his studies by pouring over books in the local library. He developed a love for science and technology, and wanted to find a way to bring electricity and running water to his home.

Mr. Kamkwamba atop his windmill (Photo courtesy of HarperCollins)

After reading donated textbooks, Mr. Kamkwamba designed and built a windmill from scrap metal that continues to supply his village with electricity and running water today. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope, which he co-authored with journalist Bryan Mealer, chronicles the creation of this windmill. In an interview with publishing firm HarperCollins, Mr. Kamkwamba said, “All things are made possible when your dreams are powered by your heart.”

Currently a student at Dartmouth College, Mr. Kamkwamba travels across the country speaking to groups about his life since building the windmill and the publication of The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind.

“I’m Not A Superhero,” says Luma Mufleh

“If you had one wish in the world what would it be?”

Luma Mufleh’s grandmother used to ask her this when she was a child.  Mufleh’s response was usually a new toy or soccer cleats.  Then she would ask the same of her grandmother.  “Her answer was always the same,” said Mufleh.  “’I wish everyone in the world would have clean drinking water.’”

Speaking in the third annual Sara Wattles Perry ’77 Lecture, Mufleh told the story of her privileged childhood growing up in Amman, Jordan; hitting rock bottom twice after her parents cut her off financially; and how a wrong turn led to the first private school in America dedicated to the education of refugee children.

“I made a wrong turn.”
On what seemed like a normal day in Clarkston, Georgia, Mufleh made a wrong turn and encountered five boys playing soccer in a parking lot.  She watched them and remembered the pickup games she had played with her brothers in Jordan.

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