Returning home: Season of Sharing helps Bradenton couple with a dream of home

Categories: Stories of Impact, COMMUNITY CARE: Preventing Homelessness, Season of Sharing,

The day that Vicki Barber spread her mother’s ashes at Sanibel Island, she knew it was her time.

Time to live her own life.

Her kids were grown. Her dear mom gone. Her cancer in remission.

Sanibel was the source of her greatest childhood joys. Being there seemed a sign for Vicki to finally follow a decades-long dream – to return to Florida for good.

She and her husband sold off their stuff in Tennessee and drove their truck southeast.

When they crossed the state line more than a year ago, she didn’t realize the struggles this move would bring them.

Living out a dream

As a girl, Vicki was happiest at the beach, salt-tinged air filling her nose.

Her mother raised Vicki and her two older brothers on her own in South Florida, working two or three jobs to make ends meet. But she always carved out time and money for summer vacations on Sanibel Island.

“We didn’t want to leave,” Vicki said of those sun-splashed days.