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Hall of Fame baseball player Andre Dawson to launch swim program

Miami Times staff report | 5/15/2014, 9 a.m.

Hall of Fame baseball player Andre Dawson, who graduated from Southwest High School in Miami, will be on hand to launch the city of Miami’s swim program at Gibson Park in Overtown. The event will be a part of an officials a ribbon-cutting ceremony where District 5 Commissioner Keon Hardemon is expected to attend.

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Andre Dawson

The Kiwanis Club of Key Biscayne donated a total of $6,500 toward the program. Youths can take three, 45-minute swim lessons per week for $45.

According to U.S. government statistics, Black children ages 5-14 die from accidental drownings at a rate that is three times higher than white children of the same age.

Dawson will talk to the kids about the importance of learning how to swim. Dawson, the Biscayne Bay Kiwanis’ Citizen of the Year in 2011, had a fear of the water as a youth and didn’t learn how to swim until he was an adult.

Since 1950, the Biscayne Bay Kiwanis Club (BBKC), a non-profit organization that has fostered leadership and provided artistic, cultural and science-centered educational opportunities for children primarily in the underserved areas of Allapattah, Overtown, Little Havana and Downtown Miami.