"Understanding CST in Rural Ugandan Villages" by Marisa Perino

Marisa Perino, '20, English

For my CST Capstone, I travelled to Kyarusozi, Uganda to conduct research on a local faith-based organization, Let Us Move Mountains (LUMM).  My objective was to determine how Catholic Social Teaching (CST) allowed a faith-based organization to uniquely adapt to their community and how this organization was implementing the principles of CST.   My secondary objective was to identify weaknesses and areas where LUMM can grow.  My research consisted of interviewing LUMM’s founder and employees as well as the founders of LUMM’s business partners, YPEA and the St. John Bosco Vocational School.  Through these interviews, I aimed to identify LUMM’s intentions concerning faith and their experiences with CST.

My study found that LUMM’s successful implementation of CST principles in their daily work has helped them intimately bind to their community.  Through my interviews with LUMM’s employees, I found that LUMM: promotes the dignity of each partner, stands in solidarity with their needs, encourages the right to work among clients, and takes special care to commit their partners to sustainability.  With YPEA, they established a program that teaches sustainable farming to the community which not only expresses care for God’s creation, but also calls the community together.  With their other business partner, the St. John Bosco Vocational School, they have installed a new computer lab that was funded by the students with strategy help from LUMM.