• History
  • Purpose
  • Services
  • Address

Little Mexico

Little Mexico is a not-for-profit organization affiliated with Catholic Charities.This ministry is lead on by Sr. Therese Mary Martinez, Holy Spirit Missionary Sister. This organization has a board of 8 trustees and many people who help voluntarily.

Typical activities developed by Sr. Therese Mary includes family counseling and help with finding jobs; she also appears in court as a character witness and speaks out on behalf of the rights of people from Latin America. She says, “Through God’s guidance and grace, I can help others. God is always one step ahead of me, but I keep on working and following Him.”

  • Little Mexico traces its beginning to April 20, 1958 when a sister and her helper found a settlement of Mexican families in Des Plaines, Illinois, who needed help.  They began to hold religious education classes and also created a network of help.

  • In 1961, Santa Teresita was opened in Palatine to serve the Spanish-speaking people. Queen of the Rosary in Elk Grove Village also welcomed the Hispanic community with open arms.

  • In 1963 that the Sisters began the Sponsorship Program which would allow the families to take out loans. They were to pay back the loans in weekly or bi-weekly payments.

  • Sr. Therese Marie Martinez named her project LITTLE MEXICO and in 1972 began the thrift shop on River Road in Mount Prospect.


Little Mexico's main purpose is:

  • to help hispanic people to find resources to acquire their own house. (So far more than 200 families have been helped to buy their own homes).

  • To promote the charitable, benevolent, educational, literary, cooperative and social interchange of communication between people of Mexican-American heritage and the general public.

  • To aid Mexican-American people to establish businesses, purchase homes and further...

Little Mexico’s basic philosophy is that all human life is sacred. All people should be treated with respect, love and care.

The original goal of Little Mexico was to provide for spiritual needs and a source of support with limited funds for the Hispanic community in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago, later on was changed to help families in need of a proper home.

Services and Activities

Services Offered

  • Secretarial (legal) service
  • Immigration
  • Court Interpreter
  • Operating a second hand store, providing affordable clothing and household goods
  • Supervising the people who are assigned by court to do community service hours in the shop

Special Store Activities

  • Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays people can buy bags full of clothes for $ 5
  • Weekly Flea Market from the month of April through October
  • By maintaining a store that sells donated used clothing, accessories, house wares and furniture, Little Mexico continually provides necessities to needy individuals in the community, and runs other social service programs.

Sources of Income

  • Rent from two rooms for office space in our building
  • The Flea Market
  • Donation from local parishes


Contact us at:

Little Mexico,Inc
Office, Thrift Shop & Home Start Program
111 North Wolf Road
Wheeling, IL 60090-2920
Phone: 847-419-8935