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One-year-old Simon Kovacs was born premature, at just 28 weeks. He’s faced a lot of health challenges early in life but is a real fighter and continues to defy his doctors’ expectations. He lives with his parents, younger brother and two sisters, plus nine rescue animals. Whew! Satan’s Little Helper thought Simon and his family could use a fun treat to brighten their day.

Simon loves to be around people and animals – something his home is never short of! The family have two rescue dogs, who Simon adores, five cats and two rescue ponies. “Simon just absolutely inspires love, he’s got an army behind him here,” says his mum Sally. “He really lights up when he sees his dad, Ferenc; they have a very special bond!” Simon has been defying the odds since day one. His early arrival likely saved his life and possibly Sally’s. He had a very short umbilical cord, which was not picked up in his scans, and would very likely have ruptured if he continued to grow. “Simon decided he was coming and that was that!” says Sally. When he was born, Simon weighed just 947 grams and spent the first five months of his life in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU). During that time, he underwent major surgery to rewire his stomach at two and a half days old, and and fought a potentially deadly infection. He left hospital with a hearing aid and was on oxygen due to having Laryngomalacia a softening of the airways which means he can’t always get enough oxygen into his lungs. “By the time he was ready to go to daycare, he’d decided he was going to rip the tubes out. He’s stubborn!” says Sally. “Luckily, they tested his oxygen levels at the hospital and he was perfect, so they took him off.” Simon also has low muscle tone due to being born with Down’s Syndrome. He was told he may never crawl or walk, but he’s defying all expectations! “He’s crawling and he’s into everything. He’s starting to pull himself up, so it won’t be long until he’s on his feet! All of these people said he’d never walk, he’d never talk – he’s just learned ‘no’.” Simon’s aunty, Toni, nominated him to Satan’s Little Helper. “He’s an amazing little boy. He’s taken everything he was told he wouldn’t be able to do and thrown that back in their faces,” she says. “He’s gone from this tiny little unfinished baby to this perfect little boy, who lights up everybody’s life.” Satan’s Little Helper agreed that Simon and his family deserved a treat. Toni said they’ve been wanting to go to the Troll Caves in Waitomo for a long time, so we are sending the family there! “We’re absolutely touched and thrilled! We can’t thank Satan’s Little Helper enough!” says Sally. We hope Simon keeps on defying all expectations that are placed on him!


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