Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
June 8, 2011


Dear Friends and Colleagues:

As you know, the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM) has tried hard in recent years to strengthen our communication efforts – to give interested stakeholders (and all Americans are interested stakeholders in our worldwide humanitarian efforts) more information on what we do, day-in and day-out to protect vulnerable populations and promote conditions for peace and reconciliation. There is so much knowledge on humanitarian issues within civil society, and we in the government can best benefit from your perspectives when you know exactly what we are doing – and what we are trying to do. Moreover, we believe we have an obligation to explain our program and policy efforts to as wide an audience as possible, especially when they so clearly reflect the humanitarian values of the American people.

For this reason, I’m pleased to announce that PRM has launched several social media initiatives that we hope you will check out. We want to better share information with domestic resettlement agencies, local communities hosting resettled refugees, other Americans, and our international organization partners.

We’ve launched our own Facebook page (www.facebook.com/State.PRM) where we are posting timely updates, photos, and videos of our efforts and those of our partners. We are excited to provide this venue to engage the public on U.S. refugee and resettlement policy and the U.S. government’s life-saving humanitarian assistance in the areas of population, refugees, and migration.

In addition, PRM now has a YouTube playlist, a flickr page, and we blog regularly on DipNote, the State Department’s official blog. In the lead up to World Refugee Day on June 20, we are highlighting stories on DipNote from State Department employees who are former refugees. We've also recently released several new fact sheets on our admissions and resettlement programs, statelessness, protracted refugee situations, and other issues, which are now available here -- with more in the works. Links to all these sites can be found at the top of PRM’s webpage and through the icons under my signature at the end of this letter.

Finally, let me note that I will participate next week in a web chat entitled "Conversations with America: Helping the World's Refugees." I will be joined by George Rupp, President of the International Rescue Committee. The web chat will be streamed live on Dipnote on Tuesday June 14 from 10:15-11:00 A.M.

We hope you find these social media and online resources engaging and helpful in describing our work on behalf of refugees and vulnerable people. More importantly, we hope you will use the information provided to offer your perspectives on how we can better achieve the humanitarian objectives of the U.S. Government and the American people.

Many thanks, and kind regards,
Eric Schwartz
Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration

[This is a mobile copy of PRM Connects Through Social Media]