Best Practices for Internet Outreach


On July 28, the National Youth Advocacy Coalition held a Webinar called ‘Best Practices for Internet Outreach.’

The webinar was presented by guest Ra’Shawn Flournoy, Internet Outreach Coordinator of AID Upstate-Greenville South Carolina

The Objective of the call was to understand how to engage youth in internet outreach and understanding the best practices for conducting outreach and what tools exist.

Flournoy provided some examples of how his organization reaches out to black MSM, and offers suggestions of how organizations can apply these tools and practices for their networking.

Sites commonly used by the LGBT community such as: twitter, facebook, adam4adam, manhunt, myspace, google and craigslist are great ways to reach out for the following ways:

They are AFFORDABLE – Though some sites charge fees, others are completely free to use

They are EFFECTIVE – Within the past 3 years, his organization reached hundreds of black MSM through internet outreach. Of these, over sixty have come in for counseling and testing.

They allow for CAPACITY building – Internet Outreach includes people across the country through webinars, social media, etc.

In performing Internet Outreach, BE AWARE

  • Ensure you are qualified to serve community in the way that you are attempting to do
  • Maintain focus with clients
  • Be self-aware: Are you comfortable with social media or the population you are serving?
  • Need to understand cultural competency to reach them

Great Tips

  • Be honest about purpose about presence on site
  • Make it personalized (use name and picture)
  • Give incentives (prizes for participation)
  • To reaching out to more marginalized individuals, bring in members of those community to do outreach

If you missed the presentation, go to NYAC’s website for slides and recording of the webinar. If you attended the webinar, their website also contains additional resources on reaching out to the LGBT community through social media.

by Emilia Dunham

Network for LGBT Tobacco Control Staff

Published by Emilia Dunham, MPP, MBA

Emilia Dunham is currently a Project Manager at MassHealth/Department of Public Health, and formerly the Project Manager of the Life Skills project at The Fenway Institute, an HIV intervention study for young transgender women. Emilia worked at Fenway for 7 years, first as a Quality Control and Regulatory Assistant mainly involved with biomedical HIV prevention trials, before serving as the Program Associate for The Network for LGBT Health Equity, a network instrumental in many national LGBT health policy improvements. She is also involved with the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition, serving as a Steering Committee member and the Policy Committee Co-Chair, an organization largely responsible for the recent passage of the Trans Rights Bill. Additionally she serves as a member of the Massachusetts Commission on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth, Co-Chair of the Recommendations Committee. Emilia received a Bachelor’s degree from Northeastern University. There she served as President of the LGBTQ student group where she planned programs such as Pride Week, Transgender Day of Remembrance, and AIDS Week. In addition, she advocated for LGBTQ inclusive policies and programming on campus such as a Gender Neutral Housing program, an LGBTQ Center and the expansion of Women’s Studies to Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies. Emilia recently earned a Master of Public Policy and Master of Business Administration in health policy and management from the Brandeis Heller School School for Social Policy and Management.

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