Halifax Women’s History Society raising money for statue to be located near Halifax Seaport Market

By Hal Higgins, CBC News

A women’s group in Halifax will launch a special waterfront project today.

The Halifax Women’s History Society wants to build a monument to recognize the thousands of women who volunteered during wartime.

“Our goal is to erect a statue or series of statues that will honour and commemorate the staggering amount of work done by women volunteers during the Second World War, ” said society chair Janet Guildford.

The group has named the project WOW, which stands for A Woman on the Waterfront.

Guildford said women are rarely portrayed in Halifax-area statues.

Janet Guildford, chair, Halifax Women's History Society
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Janet Guildford, chair of the Halifax Women’s History Society, says women are rarely portrayed in Halifax-area statues. (Submitted by Janet Guildford)

“There are more than a hundred monuments in the HRM, but less than a dozen depict women,” she said. “And mostly they’re mythological women. We have fairies and nymphs, for example, in the Public Gardens.”

The Halifax Port Authority has given the group a site across from the Halifax Seaport Market on which the statue can be built.

Guildford estimates the project will cost $750,000. So far, the group has collected $100,000.

She said they are “deep in the process of attracting private and public funds,” with a significant contribution from an anonymous donor.

The municipality has kicked things off with a couple of small grants, she said, and now the Women’s History Society is looking for help from the province and the federal governments.

But in the meantime, it has put out a proposal for female sculptors to bid on the project. Guildford expects A Woman on the Waterfront to be erected in 2017.