According to the World Bank, Africa is the world’s youngest continent with more than 50 percent of the population under the age of 20. It’s these young people who are tackling our continent’s challenges with creativity and innovation. Here are some young African inventors who are changing lives through ingenuity.
Engineering whiz kid from Sierra Leone
Meet nineteen-year-old Kelvin Doe from Sierra Leone who at the age of 13 built, homemade batteries and a generator to power a community radio station all from recycled materials. His efforts led him to become the youngest ever "visiting practitioner" with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) International Development Initiative in 2012.
Photo credit: sierraloaded.comSolar-powered schoolbags in South Africa
Thato Kgatlhanye from Rustenburg, South Africa, designs solar-powered schoolbags. These bags go a long way to help underprivileged school children who struggle to do their homework at night because there is no electricity to power the lights. The eco-satchels, which are made from recycled plastic shopping bags, charge up during the day and transform into a study lamp at night.
Photo credit: Thato KgatlhanyeThe Malawian youth builds his own windmill
William Kamkwamba from Malawi is a self-taught engineer and inventor. When he was just 14, William built an electricity-producing windmill using blue gum trees, bicycle parts, and materials collected from a scrapyard to power his family home. William also built a solar-powered water pump that supplies drinking water to his community and helps improve agriculture in his village. Photo credit: William and The Windmill
Enterprising youths like Kelvin, Thatho and William and many others are changing our continent for the better because of their pursuit of progress. It’s important to tell their stories.