Kelvin Doe was only 13 when he was spotted in the limelight 3 years ago by MIT due to his inventions. Hailing from Sierra Leone, Africa he became the youngest person invited to the MIT’s “Visiting Practitioner’s Program’ after he built batteries and a generator using just materials that he picked up from the trash bins along his neighborhood.
Image above: Kelvin Doe a 'child prodigy'
Thanks to ’Innovate Salone’ a national high school innovation challenge held in Sierra Leone by an international organization called Global Minimum. That was when Doctoral student, David Sengeh recognized his skills right away. Sengeh’s find gave Doe a chance to be seated on a “Meet the Young Makers” with 4 American inventors during a World Maker Faire in New York.
David Sengeh, says unless there are a host of young people who can think, at any given point that here’s a challenge, here’s a problem and it is an opportunity to solve it, there won’t be a steep growth in national level.
When Kelvin realized that he could not afford the money to purchase batteries, he had to create them. While kids around the world were playing with electronic gadgets, Kelvin from the same age group had to plunder from the trash bins. He needed to make his own batteries from materials picked from rubbish to realize his ambition to power his own home radio station project. Kelvin however did not have the privilege to do the project in a school environment. He was more than compelled to act out of necessity and pure joy of solving practical problems.
His own radio station as ‘DJ Focus’
Doe, being a self-taught engineer, has his own fully-staffed community radio station in Sierra Leone where he broadcasts news and plays music under the nickname ‘DJ Focus’. The generator that powers his radio station was created from a deteriorating voltage stabilizer found in the trash. As for the transmission, it was done with a simple antenna and the whole neighborhood can listen to it.
Light for the entire neighborhood
Doe made a battery with the combination of soda, acid & metal all wrapped up together by tape. The battery that he created lights up the homes in his neighborhood. “The lights will come on once in a week, and the rest of the month, dark” he said propelling his desire to overcome the situation with his own genre battery.
Motto of Kelvin?
Kelvin Doe says that they call me DJ Focus because, ‘I believe if you focus you can do an invention perfectly.’
I hope this story will inspire the young ones out there to fully work hard in achieving their dreams. There are many people in the third world countries with all sorts of difficulties. But that does not necessarily inspire everyone to invent things though there are some cases worthy of mentions. This boy certainly has in him some qualities that with proper training and education can do more wonders and he certainly can excel to greater heights. It is hoped that there will be some kind souls out there who are willing to sponsor his education to a higher level.