Shehwar and Maria are an interracial couple based in London, popularly known for their creative Bangla vlogs on travel, food and lifestyle. In a short span of time, their vlogs, portraying the everyday affairs of their vivacious Bangladeshi-Romanian household, has won the hearts of many.
Shehwar Hossain grew up in Bangladesh moved to the UK in 2005 to pursue his higher education. Upon completing his CIPD degree, he worked as an officer for the London Metropolitan Police. On the other hand, Maria Hossain is from Romania and has a prolific education background in engineering and environmental protection. She moved to London after working in Iraq as a health and safety professional till 2013. The couple met through a mutual friend and eventually got married in 2019, in Dhaka.
Shehwar, who currently works as an employee relations professional and Maria, who works in Health & Safety, had some time to spare while working from home during the pandemic last year. "At first, we uploaded some of our old videos. Travel was our inspiration because that is what we love doing the most," explains Shehwar, who has a knack for documenting videos of places the couple visited. "We used to share the vlogs with our friends and family, which they seemed to enjoy. Eventually, with their positive feedback and encouragement, we decided to open a YouTube channel." Their Facebook page which recently reached a million likes, is a testament to their massive fan following, which includes Bangladeshis from all over the world.
Even though it was challenging for them to carry on with their travel content due to the pandemic, they managed to successfully come up with other innovative ideas to entertain their fans.
"The best part about collaborating as a couple is that you get to have fun with your best friend, doing what you love to do. We brainstorm for ideas and it has made our bond stronger," shares Shehwar. "The fact that we are an interracial couple is something that our fans like. They are in awe that people from different countries and different cultures can be so compatible." Maria shares that Shehwar has excellent communication skills.
Shehwar further adds, "Many of our fans have shared that our videos help them with their own relationships, which we never intentionally set out to do. We are just portraying how a normal relationship should look like, and how partners should always be supportive and encouraging towards each other."
Apart from their on-screen chemistry, one of the main attractions of the couple's videos is Maria's ability to mesmerise the audience with her near-perfect Bangla, which she picked up herself. She believes that it is a medium that brings her closer to her partner. A glimpse of her endeavour can be seen in one video where she recites the verses from Nazrul's poem, "Bidrohi".
The couple's videos also shed light on breaking certain stereotypes. "There is a negative perception in the Bangladeshi society that western women are not family-oriented or that they don't stick around, which is ridiculous. We want to show people that two people from different backgrounds can live together happily."
Shehwar and Maria are grateful to the Bangladeshi community in London for the support, and are eagerly waiting to visit their fans in Bangladesh.