Boy who harnessed the wind says watching the film was ‘challenging’

William Kamkwamba, the Malawian who inspired the Netflix movie The Boy who Harnessed the Wind, has said he had “mixed feelings” watching it. 

Interviewed on the BBC’s Newsday, he said that watching the film was “challenging” because it was like reliving his story. 

Growing up in a rural village in northern Malawi, Mr Kamkwamba, now 31, dropped out of school due to a famine and did not return as his family could not afford the fees.

Wanting to continue his education, he read books in the village library and discovered an interest in electronics. 

Aged 13, Mr Kamkwamba found the components to build a wind turbine which created enough electricity to fuel some devices in his family home. 

Asked if he earned any money from the film, he said: “It’s more about getting a lot of people to learn about this story.”

Mr Kamkwamba said he is now setting up an innovation centre for young Malawians. 

“When I was building the windmill I didn’t have anyone to reach out to,” he said. 

He wants to inspire young inventors and provide them with the expertise to make their inventions a reality.

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