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Pictured from left are Cassandra Buckelew, Rachel Salinas, Judge Jane Shuler-Gray, Amy Christiansen and Schlone Lawler. (Courtesy Photo)

On Aug. 24, the Honorable Jane Shuler-Gray swore in four Artesia citizens as Court-Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteers to advocate for the best interests of children who have been removed from their home because of abuse and neglect.

CASA is central to fulfilling the community’s most fundamental obligation by making sure a qualified, compassionate adult will fight for and protect a child’s right to be safe, to be treated with dignity and respect, and to learn to grow in the security of a loving family.

CASA volunteers are appointed by District Judge Shuler-Gray to watch over and advocate for Eddy County’s abused and neglected children, making sure they don’t slip through the cracks or languish in foster care. For many abused children, their CASA volunteer will be the one constant adult presence in their lives.

Anyone interested in becoming a powerful voice for a child may call 746-6077 in Artesia. CASA is a partner agency of North Eddy County United Way.