Elder Mae Louise Campbell is one of two recipients receiving a 2016 Indspire award for culture, heritage and spirituality, presented tonight in Vancouver.
The road to discovering her identity and spirituality wasn't easy, Campbell said.
"I didn't know who I was for many, many years and I had to go in search of my own identity as an aboriginal woman with great difficulty in those years," said Campbell.
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Campbell is an elder-in-residence at Red River College in Winnipeg, as well as the keeper of Winnipeg's Grandmother Moon Lodge, which provides spiritual healing services to women in need.
"I'm a great believer in believing that until our women are healed, nothing will happen in our communities, no changes will be made," said Campbell.
"The men have to support that teaching and I know many of the men are saying now, 'The grandmothers need to teach us how to be warriors again.'"
Other Indspire Awards recipients include Carey Price for sports and Joseph Boyden for arts.
The award gala takes place in Vancouver at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre Friday night.