back to top

This Fishing Village Held A Tiny, Heartwarming Women's March

Chins up, fangs out.

Posted on

Images of women's marches around the world recently showed massive crowds spilling down streets. Meanwhile, this was the scene in Sandy Cove, Nova Scotia, a place with a permanent population of just 65 people.

Gary Wilson

A small but mighty group gathered on the highway that runs through the fishing village for their own women's march on Jan. 21.

Gary Wilson

It all started with Gwen Quigley Wilson, a 63-year-old retired teacher. Rather than making the two-and-a-half-hour drive to participate in the Halifax march, Wilson and her friend Melissa made a Facebook event for a local event.

"You just felt like, okay, this a big moment in history and you don’t want to just sit passively by and observe it. We want to do something," Wilson told BuzzFeed Canada."To be honest, we didn’t really think there'd be anybody except Melissa and myself and maybe one or two other people."
Gary Wilson

"You just felt like, okay, this a big moment in history and you don’t want to just sit passively by and observe it. We want to do something," Wilson told BuzzFeed Canada.

"To be honest, we didn’t really think there'd be anybody except Melissa and myself and maybe one or two other people."

"And then people just started arriving," she said. "It was joyful to see people rolling in."

All in all, 15 people — 13 women and two men, including Wilson's husband, Gary — met up for the march between the local school and fire station. The attendees came from communities all over Digby Neck, the peninsula Sandy Cove sits in the middle of.
Gary Wilson

All in all, 15 people — 13 women and two men, including Wilson's husband, Gary — met up for the march between the local school and fire station. The attendees came from communities all over Digby Neck, the peninsula Sandy Cove sits in the middle of.

Advertisement

"We did our walk and rattled our noisemakers and waved our signs at the passing cars and just enjoyed each other’s company," said Wilson. "It was very exhilarating just to be out walking."

They got a few honks, and a tourist who stopped to wish them well. But what Wilson and her fellow marchers weren't expecting was the massive online reaction to come.
Gary Wilson

They got a few honks, and a tourist who stopped to wish them well. But what Wilson and her fellow marchers weren't expecting was the massive online reaction to come.

One of the marchers posted a short video of the event on Facebook. Wilson was astounded when it hit 1,000 views — now it's at more than 160,000.

Facebook: video.php

And people from all over the place are leaving them messages of support.

"It’s overwhelming," said Wilson. "It just makes you realize that you’re not isolated, you’re not alone, there’s a whole world out there standing with you."

Gary Wilson

And for Wilson, there was also a reason much closer to home to march: the birth of her first granddaughter.

Wilson said she wanted her granddaughter to grow up not having to come up against the same barriers previous generations of women have faced. “You shouldn’t have to be afraid of any man or any person,” she said. “You should have every equal opportunity in the world.”
Gary Wilson

Wilson said she wanted her granddaughter to grow up not having to come up against the same barriers previous generations of women have faced.

“You shouldn’t have to be afraid of any man or any person,” she said. “You should have every equal opportunity in the world.”

Lauren Strapagiel is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto, Canada.

Contact Lauren Strapagiel at lauren.strapagiel@buzzfeed.com.

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.