In April of 1972, four La Mesa residents, Manuela Moreno, Rosario Rodriguez, Alphonso de los Santos, and Lucy Martinez, joined forces to establish Casa de Peregrinos ("House of Pilgrims"). With just $3,000 in the bank, they embarked on a mission to provide shelter, a food-and-clothing bank, and cooperative activities for the homeless, as outlined in their incorporation papers. Three years later, Sister Marsha Corrigan of the Catholic Diocese of El Paso assumed responsibility for overseeing Casa de Peregrinos. Under her guidance, the organization transitioned its focus to exclusive food distribution.
In 1982, Isabel Romero became the first paid employee of Casa de Peregrinos, taking on the roles of office and volunteer manager. In 1984, Sister Rose Kidd was appointed by the Diocese of Las Cruces to direct Casa de Peregrinos. During her tenure, the organization relocated to its first office on Spruce Street in Las Cruces and introduced the Food Security Program, which became the flagship initiative of Casa de Peregrinos, distributing a monthly food basket to needy families. In August 1987, the organization secured nonprofit status from the IRS. From these humble beginnings, Casa de Peregrinos has blossomed into Southern New Mexico's largest and most successful food pantry, serving thousands of families each year across 23 separate locations.
Get to know the Casa De Peregrinos team. From fundraising to volunteer outreach, food rescue to apple bagging, floor mopping to agency representation, we handle it all. Yet, truthfully, we rely on you- our valued supporters.