Getting Inspired by Super Kids

Is it just me or are there a lot of inspirational stories flying around this week? From the world record skydive by Felix Baumgartner (24 miles, what?!?) to celebrating "International Day of the Girl", I can't help but start to get the feeling that anything is possible. 

Today, while drinking my morning coffee and reading Treehugger, I was sneak-attacked by another article filled with inspiring stories.  In the article "21 Super Kids that Will Save the World from Adults", Chris Tackett pulls together the stories of amazing kids (let's call them super kids!) from across the globe. While these Super Kids haven't even graduated high school (some are still in elementary), they are  inventors, scientists, activists, and major innovators. They are passionate, they are smart, they are creative, and above all, they are brave. They've taken action and are creating change and they've answered the question "What do they know, they're just kids?" with a resounding "a heck of a lot more than most adults".

These kids are taking on climate change and water access, working to save endangered species, and even questioning the corporate social responsibility of some of the big dogs. Their methods and ideas may seem unconventional to the adults around them.  That's the thing about kids, they don't just think outside the box, they don't even know the box exists. Their anything-is-possible creativity is just what these big problems need. And they are making things happen.  

Check out the story of one of the 21 Super Kids: 

William, the Windmill Wizard, brings electricity to his Village.

 

Fourteen-year-old William Kamkwamba, of Masitala Village in Wimbe, Malawi first saw a windmill while reading a library book. Living in Malawi, where only 2% of the country is electrified, this image sparked a lightbulb. With the intention of generating electricity to power irrigation pumps to help his village water their crops, William built a working windmill based on the photograph in the book out of scrap metal from the junk yard. 

William is now 18 and since his first windmill, he's since built a solar-powered water pump that supplies the first drinking water in his village, two other windmills, and is planning two more, in addition to a water well drill. Even though his family could not afford to send him to school throughout his teenage years, William has been accepted to MIT. I know there are good things, big things, in store for William. 

William is incredible, you won't regret reading Treehugger's full interview with him.  

Are you thinking what I'm thinking? The bad news: I'm no longer a kid. The good news: we all have it in us to think like kids and act in the boundlessly innovative, passionate and compassionate ways of these Super Kids. We all have the capacity to be the agents of big change. So, the next time someone says "You're acting like a child"  you can say "Thanks."


October 19, 2012 by Stephanie Dalager
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