05/18/2010 01:51 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Homeboy Industries, Nation's Largest Anti-Gang Program, Lays Off 300 Workers

For over 20 years, Father Greg Boyle has worked to help Los Angeles gang members rebuild their lives. The organization Boyle founded, Homeboy Industries, has become the nation's largest anti-gang program, offering substance abuse counseling, tattoo removal, educational programs and more to ex-gang members. Through Homeboy Industries' multiple business ventures, the organization has also provided jobs for former gang members in multiple sectors, including working at a cafe, installing solar panels and silk-screening T-shirts.

Now, facing an overwhelming financial struggle, the organization has been forced to lay off 300 employees. Homeboy Industries will continue to provide services to the community, provided former staff members can lend their time on a volunteer basis. The nonprofit needs an estimated $5 million to stay afloat -- Father Greg Boyle hopes "somebody will rescue us."

CNN reports.


Subscribe to Must Reads.
The internet's best stories, and interviews with their authors.