MEL B is to receive an MBE for services to domestic violence victims.
The 46-year-old Spice Girl — a patron for Women’s Aid — has bravely spoken out on her own experience of abuse.
She also played a badly beaten victim of violence in a powerful music video, Love Should Not Hurt.
A source said of Mel’s gong: “It is well deserved. Despite her achievements in music and TV she believes her campaigning is the most important thing she’s ever done.
“Not only does she have first- hand experience of it but she has met many women who have suffered. She has a real fire in her belly about campaigning.
“She is so passionate about it and brings so much energy to everything she works on.
“She was incredibly brave to speak out as it is such a deeply personal thing for her.”
Mel has worked alongside The Sun for our campaigns to provide more funding for shelters helping women flee violence and abuse.
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In 2019 she took her crusade to win better support for victims to No 10 — declaring it her new “mission”.
The year before, she released her memoir Brutally Honest, which detailed her marriage with convicted domestic abuser Stephen Belafonte, 46.
She claims the film producer, who kept his criminal record secret from her, began a reign of coercive abuse on their wedding night in 2007 and continued for a decade.
Mel, who self-medicated with drink and drugs, revealed she attempted suicide on the eve of The X Factor final in 2014.
She has a daughter, Madison, ten, with Belafonte who she began divorcing in 2018.
They eventually reached a settlement which involved abuse charges being dropped.
Earlier this year, Mel told The Sun how she had found a new man — but her past had taken its toll.
She said: “If someone came too close to me my hairs would stand on end, even in regular, everyday life.” She also endures emotional trauma from a custody deal with Belafonte which means she is separated from Madison for months at a time.
She explained: “I’m living in the aftermath of what happens when you leave somebody who can still control you.”
In the video for Love Should Not Hurt, launched by Women’s Aid, Mel lived in a beautiful house — while being subjected to abuse behind closed doors.
She was seen being wrestled to the ground, strangled and punched.
An estimated 1.6million women in England and Wales suffered domestic abuse in the year to March 2020, with 16 to 24-year-olds most at risk.
Mel, who is keen to get the Spice Girls back on the road, said: “I want to be a Women’s Aid patron until the day I die. I’ll always be there flying the flag.”
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