Article: Misses Maria every day. May 25th 2012

Article published in paper-issue of Se & Hør 25.05.2012

Text: Per Sigve Kleppe. Photo: Private, Se og Hør.

Found and translated by Vigdis Nor.  Scanning by Tessa Lande

Photo: Love without boundaries: Maria and Alexander have been together for one and a half years. Maria is currently working in Tanzania as a doctor, while Alexander is busy with exams and Eurovision,  working in Baku. 

Misses Maria every day

Alexander Rybak is in Azerbaijan and feels the Grand Prix circus. But his thoughts go to his girlfriend – who is a doctor in Africa.

Alexander Rybaks (26) doctor- girlfriend Maria Slyngstad (26) recently moved to Tanzania to work in the hospital for Haydom Friends Foundation. There are many who need help.

– “The day before Maria was leaving I had to run and buy medical equipment for her, because she was told that they had nothing in the hospital. That made me surprised and very worried for Maria”, Alexander says to Se og Hør.

The former Eurovision winner is not the only one who has been involved in his girlfriend’s mission – so were his fans!
– “They have collected 30,000 NOK for my birthday. The money will be used so that Maria and the other doctors will have better working conditions”, says Rybak.

These days he is busy with performances in Baku, where the Eurovision Song Contest final will be held on Saturday.

Fun in Baku.
– “So far, I have fun at Eurovision. In addition, I practice five hours a day for violin- exam and prepare for the summer- show with Elisabeth Andreassen and Didrik Solli-Tangen. But I am very much looking forward to Marias return”, says Alexander.

This winter, he and his girlfriend travelled to Nepal, where the pictures from this report are taken. The trip was organized by the Strømme Foundation, which works to prevent that the young girls in the country get exploited in the sex industry.

Artist Intermediary company Taran, with the owner Tor Arne Ranghus (71) in the lead, has for a long time sponsored the foundation and took the couple to Nepal.

– “Alexander will participate in the Christmas concert, “Silent Night, Holy Night.” This will generate 500,000 NOK for the Nepal cause. Previously, we have contributed with 4.8 million NOK to Strømme Foundation. In Nepal, we saw at first hand how the money will be used”, says Ranghus.

Photo: Alexander and Maria used environmental- friendly transportation when they visited Nepal earlier this year.

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