Postcard Initiative Linking Separated Loved Ones Marks IOM 60th Anniversary in Lithuania


IOM is this week inviting people in the Lithuanian capital,
Vilnius, to send a postcard to a loved one abroad in an initiative
to remind them that bonds connecting people are much stronger than
the distance separating them.

The initiative, "Far is Close", is part of efforts to mark
IOM’s 60th anniversary not just in Geneva where the
Organization has its headquarters, but in many countries around the

The patron of the "Far is Close" campaign, former Lithuanian
president Valdas Adamkus, is inviting residents of the capital and
those visiting it, to send a postcard designed by IOM to a friend
or family member abroad.

In cooperation with the Lithuanian Post, all postcards will be
stamped with a special IOM stamp designed for the occasion and will
be dispatched to destination countries free of charge. Under the
initiative, 10,000 postcards will be sent this way.

"Nearly everyone has a family member, relative or friend living
abroad. Modern technologies ensure a very fast way to communicate
with one another. However, they cannot replace the joy and warmth
of receiving a hand-written postcard," says Audra Sipaviciene, IOM
Vilnius Head of Office. "This week, IOM is an intermediary helping
people to reconnect. Travel, explore but keep in touch with your
loved ones. This is the key message of our initiative," she

Valdas Adamkus was the first to send a postcard. A forced
migrant who has lived abroad for almost 50 years, he knows all too
well what it means to receive something from one’s homeland
and from those one misses.

As well as with Lithuanian Post, IOM has teamed up with Western
Union, the International Christmas Charity Bazaar Initiative,
Vilnius City Municipality, DELFI, Omnitel, Coffee Inn and
Westexpress, to carry out this campaign.

For further information, please contact:

Laura Maciulskaite

IOM Vilnius

Tel: +370-5-2611329

E-mail: "">

Lithuanians in Vilnius participate in IOM's "Far is Close" initiative where they send postcards to loved ones abroad to remind them that bonds connecting people are much stronger than the distance separating them. © IOM 2011