The courageous Sunderland toddler who bounced back after string of serious health problems

Brave little boy Theo Dawes is well on the mend after battling back from a string of horrendous health problems.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 9th January 2019, 5:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 9th January 2019, 1:03 pm
Parents Martin Dawes and Vicky Curry with Theo.
Parents Martin Dawes and Vicky Curry with Theo.

The Sunderland youngster, who was born 10 weeks prematurely and weighed just 2lb after complications during pregnancy, first made the headlines this time last year when he faced a string of setbacks.

But now, the two-year-old is doing much better and has a Best of Wearside Award to boast of after winning a Child of Courage trophy at the 2018 ceremony.

Best of Wearside Child of Courage winner Theo Dawes.

Today, as we launch this year’s Best of Wearside competition, Theo’s mum Vicky Curry reflected on last year’s amazing awards evening and on Theo’s huge health improvements.

“The night was amazing and for us, the win was completely unexpected,” said Vicky.

“We went there without expecting to win anything because there were a lot of other kids going through similar, if not worse conditions.

“But it was an amazing night and to win was fantastic.”

Best of Wearside Child of Courage winner Theo Dawes.

Judges heard how Theo’s battle had included a seven-week stay in a hospital’s intensive care unit, suffering a collapsed lung, and falling ill with Influenza A just before Christmas 2017.

Poorly Theo was cared for by the Sunderland Royal Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for more than seven weeks where he received a blood transfusion and was kept in a special incubator.

He also received respiratory care because his lungs were premature and weak.

And even when he returned home with parents Vicky Curry, 40, and Martin Dawes, 44, the youngster’s battles were not over. He had to go back to Sunderland Royal Hospital and the Royal Victoria Infirmary after falling ill with Influenza A.

The Child of Courage winners at the Best of Wearside Awards 2018.

But Vicky told the Echo today: “He is doing better in terms of his general health.”

Theo still needs to be checked out for breathing issues but his health is much improved.

The search is now on to find more Children of Courage to follow in Theo’s footsteps.

This year’s competition has backing from headline sponsor BGL Group, partner sponsor Gentoo and category sponsors Stagecoach and Calsonic Kansei.

We thank them all for getting on board and now comes your turn to get involved.

Send your name, address and telephone number, as well as your email address, if applicable. Remember to include the category you are putting your nominated cause into.

Also send the name of the person you wish to nominate, along with their address, telephone number and email (if known). Send all of that to Lynn Wild by no later than mid-February.

You can nominate in any one of three ways.

•Email those entries to [email protected]

•Send them to Lynn Wild, Alexander House, Second Floor, Rainton Bridge Business Park, Houghton-le-Spring, Sunderland. DH4 5RA.

•Visit the website at


Local Hero.

Green Champion.

Student of the Year.

Fundraiser of the Year.

Volunteer of the Year.

Sporting Achievement.

Community Group.

Community Champion.

Child of Achievement.

Child of Courage.