Work Ready drawing support

Workers at Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Heart of Georgia are used to helping people, but they got together Friday to help Bibb County meet a tough deadline to show Bibb County’s work force is ready to work.

Employees took the Work Ready test, hoping to help push Bibb County over a goal line before a looming deadline.

“Hopefully the community will step up to the plate and do this,” said Dianna Glymph, CEO of the organization.

Work Ready team leader Kari Kitchens said Bibb County needs to test about 300 people by Sept. 30, and she remains hopeful that hundreds of private-sector employees will sign up to help themselves and Bibb County. Testing is free, and special Saturday sessions are now scheduled at Central Georgia Technical College.

“I think we can do it. I think we can do it,” she said. “I think we have tapped everybody, and I think we can do it.”

While other groups — such as government employees and unemployed people — have far exceeded the testing numbers, the Work Ready effort needs about 300 private-sector workers to reach the goal of 746 people, Kitchens said.

Kitchens said the Work Ready testing can show which workers are trainable, how current employees can improve, and how much of Bibb County’s work force is ready to work.

That means countywide Work Ready certification can help attract new businesses to the area looking for a work force. Kitchens said if Bibb County meets the goal, it will have advantages over much of Georgia and the United States, and won’t be at a disadvantage with the neighboring counties, which already received it.

The tests are being given Thursday, Friday and Sept. 25 at 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. at Central Georgia Technical College.

Glymph said she wanted Big Brothers Big Sisters to help the community, but also saw the Work Ready testing as a way to help her employees improve.

“I truly believe it is my responsibility as a CEO to empower my staff to be the best that they can be at whatever they want to do,” she said. Glymph is also optimistic about Bibb County meeting the goal.

For information or to sign up, call Kitchens at 621-6370 or Central Georgia Technical College at (478) 757-3445.

To contact writer Mike Stucka, call 744-4251.