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One Boy, One Invention, One Incredible True Story: Inspiring Us All to Do Good

In 2006, a Malawian boy named William Kamkwamba from Malawi invented an unconventional way to save his family and village from famine. In recognition of his achievements, and to celebrate the release of Chiwetel Ejiofor’s directorial debut, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, on Netflix and in select theaters Friday, March 1, we’re partnering with William himself and the African Leadership Academy on to power a series of a screening series in Africa to and ensure that more kids like William have access to education and tools for innovation. Donations to ALA further the nonprofit’s mission of “identifying, developing and connecting Africa’s future leaders,” and they will help leaders address their citizens’ needs while surmounting the challenges of their changing continent.

We’ll use Ejiofor’s film, based on the best-selling book by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer, to stimulate critical conversation with leaders and influencers about innovation in Africa. It’s also highly important to us that the film, in addition to tools that will help people more deeply engage in its subject matter and further be inspired by William’s story, be accessible by educators and students.

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is an emotional journey between father and son, demonstrating that when barriers to education are high, it can take extraordinary courage, determination and ingenuity to achieve a better life. It premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival and can be streamed on Netflix or viewed in select theaters starting Friday.

(top) l to r: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind author William Kamkwamba & Angelina Jolie, Director Chiwetel Ejiofor (bottom) Angelina and her children; Angelina, Chitwetel & William

Earlier this week, Angelina Jolie brought her children to a special screening of The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind at the Crosby Street Hotel in New York City to raise the visibility of this powerful story and its message.  The screening was followed by a Q&A with Chiwetel Ejiofor and William Kamkwamba, moderated by the lovely Angelina Jolie, who described the film as “epic,” “intimate” and “beautifully crafted.”

Now what can you do to help?  

> Share the trailer about the film

> Support the African Leadership Academy Scholarship Fund