March 1, 2020
The Farnsworth Middle School International Club is devoted to learning about the cultures and customs of the world while providing a social outlet for students who share these interests. Sometimes those interests provide batteries that support children in school on the other side of the world.
Recently they watched the movie The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind about 14-year old William Kamkwamba who’s village in Malawi was hit by a severe drought causing crops to fail. Without enough money for food or school, William spent his days in the library and figured out how to bring electricity to his village using a windmill. His story inspired a Netflix movie, books, and a TED Talk. His efforts were recognized globally, and now as an adult he continues to inspire, mentor, and help farmers and students problem-solve in Malawi.
Inspired by William’s story, the International Club donated $800 from fundraising efforts to his charity called Moving Windmills. Some of the work the charity does includes installing clean water wells and solar panels at primary and secondary schools in Malawi.
“Our donation will be used to purchase batteries which will make computer labs and charging stations possible at these schools,” said club advisor and teacher Wendy Henschel. “William Kamkwamba will be Skyping in during one of our club meetings to personally thank the students for their efforts!”
In addition to donating to a great cause, some of the other activities the club does include lock-ins, playing games, attending cultural presentations, making crafts, and trying foods of the world. All of these activities are funded through fundraising so they are free or nearly free for members.