To celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, Sparks Magazine is featuring Asian Pacific Islander American (APIA) unsung heroes during COVID-19.


We’re excited to feature Cindy Nguyen, who is a coordinator for the Cities Connecting Children to Nature (CCCN) initiative in Houston, Texas.


Name: Cindy Nguyen


Location: Houston, TX


Profession: Coordinator, Cities Connecting Children to Nature


What are you doing to help during the COVID-19 pandemic?

My mom has been a seamstress in the Houston area for 25 years. She has had to close her alterations shop due to COVID-19. One of my friends asked me if my mom would make a mask for him. It started with just friends and family ordering, but it exploded over a week’s time. It got to be so much that I decided to make an Etsy page and

One of the face masks made by Cindy Nguyen’s mother.

we’ve been reaching a larger audience. It’s been really fun just helping my mom out and to feel like I’ve been contributing to her business in some way.

In April, we made over 1,150 masks for local Houstonians and their families, medical professionals on the frontline, and generous individuals who purchased them to donate to those in need at hospitals and prisons.


Why are you and your family doing this work?

My mom is the only one in my family working. A big portion of why she was motivated to do work still was because I’m going to grad school in August. My dad is retired and my brother is still in college. She’s never taken a day off for anything and felt antsy at home. Not being able to do anything else, this was a way for her to feel like she was still able to do something. 


Additional Info:

You can support and view Cindy Nguyen’s Etsy shop here.