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story.lead_photo.caption Noya Overman can't help but smile as she carries a new mattress up the steps of her new apartment Tuesday morning. Overman, who has four children, said this is the first time that each child will have their own room. The family, who was displaced by the tornado May 22, formerly lived about a block away in an apartment that was destroyed by the twister. Photo by Julie Smith / News Tribune.

Noya Overman stood on the porch of her new home Tuesday morning and looked up the hill as a large moving van approached.

The van, she knew, was arriving a few minutes earlier than expected, but was a welcome sight. Inside were beds for Overman and her four children, ages 10-16.

The new home is going to be a roomy change for the family, much larger than the apartment about a half a block away that was devastated by Jefferson City's May 22 tornado.

"I'm so grateful," Overman said. "I have four kids and — for the first time — each has their own room."

The delivery indicates the Central Missouri community has moved into a recovery phase following the disaster.

People whom the twister displaced are finding their new homes, in part through the help of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Overman said.

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The organization provided her with $1,000 to help get her into a new home — $500 for a deposit and $500 for the first month's rent.

The rent at her new place is $800 per month, she said, but her landlord was kind enough to reduce the first month's rent and the deposit to help Overman get on her feet.

Immediately after the disaster, donations began pouring in to the United Way of Central Missouri — and quickly outgrew the organizations' ability for storage and distribution.

In stepped Missouri Voluntary Organizations Active (MoVOA) in Disaster and the Seventh-day Adventist Church to organize and prepare for recovery. Capital West Christian Church gave the community the use of its massive warehousing capability, which allowed MoVOA to set up a large donations collection and distribution site.

For the first two months following the storm, the site focused on delivering "consumable items" to victims — things like food, paper products, cleaning products, baby products, personal care items and kitchen supplies.

In recent weeks, the consumable goods distribution has transferred to four local sites, and Catholic Charities of Central and Northeast Missouri has been conducting "case management," helping connect people with "durable goods" — such as beds, furniture, small appliances, televisions and wall art.

Once a case worker identifies which products storm victims are entitled to, the worker creates a list of those items and provides it to the warehouse. Because they are large, items such as Overman's beds are to be delivered to their door.

Delivery staff may only unload at the street. They may not carry items inside because of insurance purposes.

Smaller items are to be picked up by the storm victim.

Overman said she was to collect the remainder of her durable goods Tuesday afternoon.

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