Good Morning Angels: A bus accident victim gets her life back as the Angels come together

Good Morning Angels: A bus accident victim gets her life back as the Angels come together

Sharlene Coopoosammy, 37, from Pretoria West lives to tell the tale after being hit by a municipal bus. 

sharpen GMA 31 March
Source: Supplied

BACKGROUND: The accident happened in the Pretoria CBD in October 2019, as Sharlene was on her way to work at a sweet shop in the city. She clung to life and after five months of care in the State Hospital, went home. The wound care was excellent, with skin-grafts that healed well. However, her pelvis, broken in three places and dislocated hip, were never mended and as a result she cannot bend her hip.

Her feet have also been impacted, which makes it impossible for her to walk. As a result, Sharlene has been bedridden since the accident - unable to support herself and her pensioner mom, Sylvia Naidoo. The State Hospital has advised that it would be years before she would get the necessary surgery and pain management is all they can assist her with. 

Sharlene’s biggest wish is to be able to work and earn a living again. Her job at the sweet shop is still available to her, as soon as she’s mobile again. “I moved in with my mom to take care of her. But, for the past two years she’s been taking care of me like a baby. I can only use my arms and my mom has to do everything else for me. Our neighbour and friends have been amazing and they assist where and how they can, but I want to be able to live and take care of my mom myself.”

Without a medical aid or the means to pay for private care, Sharlene will not be able to walk again. Despite the set-back and pain, Sharlene remains unbelievably positive about the future and she deals with her realities with grace. That’s why Namugaya Kisuule wrote to Good Morning Angels to help her incredible and inspirational friend.

REQUEST FOR: Sharlene Coopoosammy 

REQUEST FROM: Namugaya Kisuule, Sharlene’s friend 

ANGEL 1: Dr Helene Basson founder of Operation Healing Hands 

SPONSORING: Dr Helene and the Operation Healing Hands team have already assessed Sharlene to determine what treatment and surgery she needs to get her back on her feet. The Operation Healing Hands team of surgeons will operate both Sharlene’s feet, so she can walk on them again. About three months after this, they will do the second phase of foot surgery and around 6 months after this they will do a total hip replacement with reconstruction of the hip socket. As always all  the doctors and medical personnel will provide their time, skill and services free of charge but due to the fact that she needs multiple surgeries and up to 7 hours of theatre time in total funding is still needed to help cover the theatre cost and consumables. 

ANGEL 2: Trevor Case, founder and owner of Accident Angels 

SPONSORING: Trevor and the Accident Angels team will donate the full R300,000 needed to pay for theatre time, hospital stay, meds, and consumables during Sharlene’s surgeries, to ensure that she gets the best medical treatment possible. Trevor will also assist with the services of a biokinetics for rehab after Sharlene’s operations.


Good morning and thank you very much for this initiative.

On the 21st of October 2019, one of my friends, Sharlene Coopoosammy,  was hit by a Tshwane bus (Bus 329). It is my understanding that a few others were also affected. But she was the worst affected. 

She was near death when she arrived at Steve Biko Hospital and it is a miracle that she survived at all. She was hospitalised for nearly 5 months and was released just in time for the Covid- lockdown of March 2020, having undergone several reconstructive surgeries. She still required a great deal of rehabilitation, which she did not have access to and a final hip-replacement surgery. This has, unfortunately, not materialised. As a result, she remains bed-ridden and has had to move back home with her mum who survives on a small SASSA grant. Because Sharlene is bed-ridden, she cannot work either. It is a desperate situation, as her two adult brothers, her brother's girlfriend and their son also live in the same small flat. 

Sharlene's last assessment has indicated that there is no reason that she should not be able to walk again. It is merely a matter of her getting the necessary surgery and rehabilitation. As we understand it, the waiting list at Steve Biko for hip replacements is 4 years long. And, as it is, the hospital has put a hold on any non-emergency surgeries until Covid has passed. No one knows when that may be. With the list growing, it may be 5 years or more before she gets a surgery, if at all. 

The City has taken no responsibility for the accident and there has been no joy, to date, from the Road Accident Fund. Sadly, Sharlene's earnings when she worked as a shopkeeper did not allow her the funds to take out a disability policy of any sort so she is literally without income or any prospect thereof. She lives in a permanent state of excruciating pain and may get 2 or 3 hours of sleep a night if she is lucky. 

Our wish is to see Sharlene up on her feet again, able to be a productive member of society, supporting her ageing mum who, herself, has several health issues. We are trying various means to raise funds for her so that she can consult in a private hospital and perhaps get the necessary pain medication and/or surgery that she needs. 

Sharlene is only 37 years old and still has a lot of life left in her. She has so much more to offer this world. 

Is there any way that her story can perhaps be mentioned on your morning show? Perhaps some good Samaritan would be willing to assist?   

Thank you very much for taking the time to read this email. We understand that not all requests and emails can be attended to. Nonetheless, we appreciate your efforts. 

Kind regards

Namugaya Kisuule

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