Sionna Brenn came to the U.S. from Ethiopia at 9 years old, and her life in the U.S. has not been easy. She says she was abused by her foster family, but overcame her struggles through her faith in God

By Damali Keith (FOX 26 Houston) |

HOUSTON, Tex.―A Houston area high school student just received a surprise of a lifetime. The teen was just given her first car.

What happened in the Starbucks parking lot where the teenager works was nothing short of magical. A perfect stranger handed her keys to a Toyota Corolla.  Did I mention the teenager is graduating with honors even though she’s homeless?

“It’s more than a dream.  It’s crazy,” Sionna Brenn smiled as tears fell down her cheeks.

Brenn was at work and went to take out the trash, but there by the dumpster Charlie Jabaley popped up with balloons and someone was honking the horn, driving a black sedan straight at her.  The big red bow on the hood of the car helped set the tone for the amazing surprising. Sionna Brenn covered her face, started crying and crouched by the dumpster as she was told “this car is yours”.

“More than anything, glory to God because I wouldn’t’ be here without Him,” she cried.

This is extra special for the Willowridge High School senior because life hasn’t always been easy since arriving in the United States from Ethiopia.

“I got adopted when I was 9 years old,” Brenn said. “In the deepest shadows it was very abusive. Families were very harsh but I’ve overcome it through His power”.

The teenager ended up homeless and working at Starbucks to support herself, but this actually isn’t only about making her dream come true.

“My one dream was to be an athlete.  I wanted to be fit.  So I’ve lost 130 pounds,” Charlie Jabaley explains. Jabaley was the manager for rapper 2 Chainz but left the music industry after being diagnosed with a brain tumor more than a year ago.  Now by day, he’s riding his bicycle across country and hopping on a brightly painted bus at night for what he calls the Dream Machine Tour.

“Everywhere we go, we’re looking for people who have dreams and how we can help them,” says Jabaley.

“I think I’m in a dream right now,” Brenn says just before joining dozens of others, writing her dream on the side of Jabaley’s bus. She wrote her dream is to “Reach the world with the gospel of Christ.”

“He’s helped me and he’s the focal point of my life,” she says.

Sionna Brenn has a scholarship to the University of Texas at San Antonio. She wants to become a dentist.

By the way, now that she has a car, she needs to get a license and learn to drive it. Jabaley is also paying for her driving lessons.

Source: FOX 26 Houston (KRIV)
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