Steph Waring's life has changed in ways she "could have never imagined" following a charity visit to Iraqi Kurdistan.
The "Hollyoaks" actress recently returned from the autonomous region in northern Iraq where she heard a "heart-breaking" story from Nobel Peace Prize winner Nadia Murad's sister, who told how her brothers were murdered and the women were sold as sex slaves after their village was invaded by ISIS.
Steph - who is a goodwill ambassador of Bring Hope Humanitarian Foundation, which aims to save lives, alleviate suffering, and give refugee children hope for the future - wrote on Instagram: "I have just arrived back in the UK from Iraq Kurdistan where I spent a few days with my charity @bringhopefoundation visiting the refugee camps. This experience has opened my eyes to so much and changed me in ways I could have never imagined.. seeing first hand the devastation and poverty over there was truly heart breaking but I feel very privileged to have been allowed into to camps to help and provide the Yazidi ladies and children with much needed goods. What I have seen is their reality and has been for 6 years and nothing is going to change for them so all we can do as a charity is to provide them with everything they need, from clothes, medical supplies, sanitary protection, toys and books, football equipment and so much more. I was also able to chat with Nadia Murads family, Nadia has just won the Nobel Peace Prize .. her sister went into great detail about what happened to Nadia herself and family when ISIS invaded their village, her brothers murdered and the women were sold as sex slaves.. it was heart breaking to listen to. (sic)"
Steph - who plays Cindy Cunningham in the Channel 4 soap - is optimistic her visit has gone some way to "bring hope" to some of the people she met.
She added: "If I can take anything away from this trip it is to fully appreciate everything I have and to help anyone I can in need, this shouldn't be anyone's reality. I want to say a huge thank you to @7campbell and the rest of the @bringhopefoundation team for looking after me. What an experience #charity #bringhope #refugees (sic)"