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The Power of Books

Today’s Diane Rehm radio program featured the amazing story of a 14-year-old boy from Malawi, William Kamkwamba, who taught himself how to build a windmill out of garbage, bringing light to his remote village and transforming the lives of everyone in it. For us, the most notable piece of the story, featured in the new book The Boy Who Harnesed the Wind (William Morrow, 2009) was that William, whose parents could no longer afford the $80 to send him to school, taught himself physics and how to build the windmill through donated science books borrowed from a small library in rural Malawi. What an incredible testament to the power of books. Aid for Africa member Books for Africa has been sending books to Africa for more than 20 years. Lubuto Library Project creates open access libraries for the most vulnerable children of Africa– orphans, street kids, and those affected by AIDS. Isn’t it amazing how books empowered William Kamkwamba and how he was able to change his world?  We salute him and all the organizations that bring books and knowledge to children.