For Wiradjuri woman Jodie Patterson, being a senior program development officer for Corrections Services NSW is her way of positively impacting the Indigenous community.
"I love working with Aboriginal offenders, assisting them to grow and reconnect with family and community," she said.
Ms Patterson is among 10,000 Corrective Services NSW staff celebrated on January 21 for National Corrections Day.
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Ms Patterson's work includes assessing offenders and assisting with case planning, so they can access the most beneficial services and behaviour change programs on their journey to rehabilitation.
"The work we do has huge impacts on the community. We work hard to assist the cohort to look at how their behaviour and how it affects community and family," she said.
"We work hard in the reintegration of people from custody to the community, by way of inviting Elders and other community organisations to assist the transition."
Working in Dubbo and Wellington Community Corrections, Ms Patterson now travels state-wide to train staff in NSW correctional centres.
"I'm an advocate for Aboriginal staff and work with a team to build a support network which assists staff through tough times or who are just coming into the Service," she said.
"I've been through the Aboriginal Mentor Program and pride myself in the work that I do as a mentor."
She said there is never a dull moment on the job and works closely with the Aboriginal Strategy and Policy Unit, where she assists with the audio-visual funeral attendance for Aboriginal inmates unable to physically attend.
"It's important to help families connect during sorry business and it gives the inmate some closure they may not otherwise have had," she said.
It's the connections she has made with people Ms Patterson said she loves most about her job.
"It's the people I meet and the impact I have on both the cohort we work with and our staff."
The 2022 National Corrections Day theme is 'giving back', which focuses on how our staff go beyond the call of duty to protect the community, mentor staff, fundraise for important charities and contribute to vital community projects and partnerships.
CSNSW includes almost 5000 custodial officers, 1800 Community Corrections staff, 800 industries workers, 900 psychologists and programs officers and 1000 security and intelligence staff.
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