Photographer: Bernice Wong
Year of Submission: 2016 (Educators Edition)
Mel, 35, runs Pluspoint, a dance group for at-risk young men in Singapore. The group’s eight to ten members meet around three times a week to practise their repertoire of hip-hop, folk and modern Indian dance. Mel has been imprisoned twice for drug-related offences. She set up Pluspoint after being released from her second spell in jail in 2010. Its mission is to help young people avoid drugs and drug-related crime. A single mother, Mel supports herself and her seven children by working as a cleaner at Orchard Gateway, a shopping mall in downtown Singapore. The group’s running costs are low. When new costumes are needed, everyone chips in a little money.