Farm Worker
Photo Credit: Supplied

Young farm worker Sané Wilken got caught in a terrible accident whilst on the job. Now, her community are rallying together to help her grasp her dreams again with hopes of getting her a bionic arm:


Boshoff, South Africa (25 February 2024) — Sané Wilken, a passionate 18-year-old cattle farm worker from Boshoff, Free State, experienced a traumatic event on 25 January which profoundly altered her life’s trajectory.

While engaged in a routine task (pouring fertiliser into a motorised water tank) Sané’s thumb unexpectedly got caught and twisted in the bag she was using, leading to a catastrophic sequence of events.

Despite the immediate danger and her attempts to free herself, the machinery relentlessly twisted the bag around her thumb, eventually resulting in her losing her forearm.

While Sané says her life has been forever changed due to the traumatic incident, she is determined not to let her define her future. Showing remarkable strength of character, Sané told her mother, Corila, in the emergency room, “It’s only an arm. I’m still alive to speak to you, and this will not get me down.”

Pictured above: Sané with her mother, Corila

Since losing her arm, Sané is diligently working to adapt to her new circumstances. Her greatest challenges now stem from everyday tasks that she once performed effortlessly. Simple activities such as tying her hair in the morning, getting dressed, eating, and playing with her cherished dogs have become notably more difficult.

While doctors estimate that it could take 6 to 12 months for Sané’s arm to heal, her mother has initiated a crowdfunding campaign to purchase a bionic arm for her. This advanced prosthetic, equipped with sensors that interpret muscle and brain signals, is intended to help Sané grasp the confidence and dreams that have been pushed to the side.

Pictured above: Sané Wilken

But in a hopeful start, more than R83,000 has already been donated; each rand imperative to the young farmer’s future!

Having recently completed her agricultural education, Sané, who has dreamed of becoming the best farmer she could be since she was a little girl, is counting the days until she can return to the work that feeds her spirit, lovingly tending to the crops and cattle.

Reflecting on the accident, Sané says, “It was a freak accident. There was nothing anyone could’ve done differently. It’s no one’s fault. I’m not ashamed of my ‘stompie’ and will show anyone who wants to see my arm and tell my story.”

Thanking her donors, Sané says, “They have given me a second chance. I can’t say thank you enough for the kindness I have received. I’m taking life day by day now, but I know that one day soon, I will be able to live as I did before the accident.”

What a resilient young lady! The young farm worker and her dream to have a bionic arm can be supported here.

Sources: Supplied 
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About the Author

Ashleigh Nefdt is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Ashleigh's favourite stories have always seen the hidden hero (without the cape) come to the rescue. As a journalist, her labour of love is finding those everyday heroes and spotlighting their spark - especially those empowering women, social upliftment movers, sustainability shakers and creatives with hearts of gold. When she's not working on a story, she's dedicated to her canvas or appreciating Mother Nature.

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