At Conway Junior High School, they believe in taking care of their own.

That's why this year, faculty, students and the community banded together to provide Christmas presents for students in need.

CJHS's Tiffany Stroman said 33 students were helped this year.

She said while it had been done in the past, the "Adopt-A-Paw" initiative slipped through the cracks, but this year, several people mentioned wanting to get it back and do it again.

"We have a really good culture of caring at this campus," Stroman said. "We care about our kids."

Stroman said her co-chair, Meagan Williams, helped her garner the support for Operation Cat Nation Christmas, which "just blew up."

"As something that started small, it is huge now," she said. "It just blew us away."

Stroman said a list of junior high students who are in need during the holiday season is provided. Those students then fill out a form with items they want and need.

From there, those items are written on paper paws — 300 total were created — and students, faculty, community members and others pick them up and buy that item.

Stroman said everything from hoodies to video games to scooters were requested.

Often times, she said, organizations, that are great helping with younger children, tend to stop around age 13 or 14.

"This is kind of the forgotten age group," Stroman said. "These are still kids. They still want kid stuff."

She said organizers felt compelled to do this for their students and wanted to make sure no one was left out or fell through the cracks.

"If we didn't do it, we feel like nobody would, so we stepped up and said we're going to do it," Stroman said.

Items were collected up to Dec. 15.

Stroman said all of the 300 paws that were created were satisfied.

She said students were spending their own money, families adopting whole families and others who didn't have much money but wanted to contribute in any way they could.

Between 60-75 percent of the collected paws, Stroman said, were taken from their own students.

"I was just blown away by these kids that were coming in," she said. "They blew us away, just with what they were doing. I really think these kids got into it."

Stroman said they had so many paws picked up that first day that they had to scramble and find more students who needed help. She said they started with around 20 and ended up adding around 13 more because the response was so good.

"It's emotional," Stroman said. "It'll gut punch you sometimes when you have a kid say 'I know what it's like to not have Christmas so I want to make sure other kids have Christmas.'"

What touched her the most, she said, was seeing 13-15 year old kids coming in and and helping out their peers.

"You know, they get a bad wrap — they're teenagers — but these kids are incredible," Stroman said.

Being a part of a community where this type of holiday spirit is happening, she said, is special.

"It really is," Stroman said. "This is a special campus and it's a great community of parents and teachers and we love it here. I'm just so thankful we're able to be a part [of this]."