It Changed My Life

It Changed My Life: Once a homeless teen, now a youth leader

After her parents separated, Ms Siti Noor Mastura had to cope with her family's financial difficulties and her mother suffering from depression, while living in interim housing. Today, she is the founder of two non-profit organisations.
Miss Mastura also started the Interfaith Youth Circle to build bridges between people from different faiths. With her earlier hardships behind her, Miss Siti Noor Mastura became a flight attendant and started seeing the world. But she never forgot th
With her earlier hardships behind her, Miss Siti Noor Mastura became a flight attendant and started seeing the world. But she never forgot the poverty which once shackled her, so she started two initiatives - a food distribution programme called Back2Basics and an interfaith programme. Over time, Back2Basics grew organically and now helps more than 50 families.ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG

Feisty fighter emerged from the worst of times to help others in need

Siti Noor Mastura's voice starts quavering as tears well up in her eyes. She stops talking, blinking furiously as she swallows the lump in her throat.

The tears drop; her right hand reaches out for a piece of tissue paper on the table.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on December 16, 2018, with the headline 'Once a homeless teen, now a youth leader'. Print Edition | Subscribe