U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Other State Department Archive SitesU.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Home Issues & Press Travel & Business Countries Youth & Education Careers About State Video
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
What We Do
 - Refugee Admissions and Resettlement
 - Population
 - Migration
 - Junior Professional Officer (JPO) & Associate Expert (AE) Programs
 - Funding
 - Iraqi Refugee Assistance and Resettlement
 - How We Work
 - Where We Work
 - What We Are Saying
 - Glossary
 - Contact Us

What We Do

Top: Sudanesse woman with child; Middle: Health worker; Bottom: AID workers standing on top of Dugout House [State Dept. Photos]

What is the Bureau’s role in the Department of State?

The Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM) is one of the State Department’s “functional,” as opposed to “geographic” bureaus. This indicates a Bureau that focuses on a particular issue wherever it arises around the world. As described in our mission statement, our focus is refugees, other migrants, and conflict victims. Our goal is to protect these people, who are often living in quite dangerous conditions.

The Bureau's mission statement:

The mission of the Bureau is to provide protection, life-sustaining relief, and durable solutions for refugees and conflict victims, working through the multilateral humanitarian system to achieve the best results for refugees and conflict victims on behalf of the American taxpayer. The Bureau has primary responsibility within the U.S. government for formulating policies on population, refugees, and migration, and for administering U.S. refugee assistance and admissions programs.

What does the Bureau do internationally?

The Bureau works with the international community to develop humane and what are termed “durable” solutions to their displacement. The three durable solutions, are:

  • Repatriation - going home when they are no longer at risk of persecution
  • Local Integration - settling permanently in the country to which they have fled
  • Resettlement - settling permanently in a third country

    According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), fewer than 1% of refugees worldwide are ever resettled. However, although resettlement often is the durable solution of "last resort," it remains a vital tool for providing international protection and for meeting the special needs of individual refugees who are unable to return home.

Are internally displaced persons (IDPs) part of the Bureau's portfolio?

Internally displaced persons are people who have been displaced from their homes but who have not crossed an internationally recognized border. The Bureau supports the work of its key partners, UNHCR and ICRC, when these organizations respond to IDP needs. We coordinate our IDP programming with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). USAID responds to the needs of these people primarily by funding the work of non-governmental organizations and other international organizations.

Please click on a photo below to learn about the refugee populations and the Bureau's programs in the region.

Afghanistan Afghanistan Africa Africa Balkans The Balkans
The Caribbean The Caribbean The Caucasus The Caucasus Colombia Colombia
Iraq Northeast and South Asia

Northeast and South
Asia: India, Nepal, Sri
Lanka, China, Mongolia
& Korea

Palestinians Palestinians
Southeast Asia Southeast Asia:
Thailand, Malaysia
& Bangladesh

U.S. Department of State
USA.govU.S. Department of StateWhat's New  |   Frequent Questions  |   Contact Us  |   Email this Page  |   Subject Index  |   Search
The Office of Electronic Information, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as a portal for information from the U.S. State Department. External links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views or privacy policies contained therein.
About state.gov  |   Privacy Notice  |   FOIA  |   Copyright Information  |   Other U.S. Government Information