Tales from the Field: How the recession is affecting youth services.

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Washington—Here is one definition of serious trouble: A funder cuts your $400,000 grant to $185,000.

That’s just one of the hits taken recently by The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, which last month announced that it will close at least four clubs, sell several others, lay off 10 percent of the staff and give the rest a 26-day furlough. The nonprofit has been struggling for years and was planning to restructure, then had to act quickly as private and government contributions plummeted.

The organization began the fiscal year with a $17 million annual budget; by June, it expects to be running at an $11.5 million annual rate, said Chief Operating Officer M.J. Morrow.

Morrow said the clubs plan to keep all programs running, although some will shrink. The large cut in the grant, for instance, forced the agency to curtail a gang outreach program.

The agency reports 15,000 members at its 22 clubs.