as·​sis·​tance ə-ˈsi-stən(t)s How to pronounce assistance (audio)
: the act of helping or assisting someone or the help supplied : aid
financial and technical assistance
Can I be of any assistance? [=can I help you?]

Examples of assistance in a Sentence

Any assistance you can give me would be appreciated. I'll be happy to provide you with whatever assistance you may need.
Recent Examples on the Web Congress approves a farm bill on a cycle, which includes updates to programs related to nutrition assistance, conservation, research and commodity protections, among others. Alex Thomas,, 26 Nov. 2023 The majority of the funds went to some 5,200 businesses seeking disaster assistance. Jenny Goldsberry, Washington Examiner, 25 Nov. 2023 After getting a call for assistance about 7:15 a.m., lifeguards found the boat approaching the surfline. Teri Figueroa, San Diego Union-Tribune, 24 Nov. 2023 With assistance from attorney Ben Crump following NBC News' reporting, Wade was exhumed from the pauper's grave, marked only with a number, in November. Jon Schuppe, NBC News, 23 Nov. 2023 Clark’s father also contacted the sheriff’s office and offered his assistance. Angel Saunders, Peoplemag, 22 Nov. 2023 The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power shut off the power lines as firefighters climbed a ladder to reach the man to provide medical assistance. Anthony De Leon, Los Angeles Times, 21 Nov. 2023 Officers, with assistance from the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, tried to contact any occupants inside the home, but there was no answer. Stephen Sorace, Fox News, 21 Nov. 2023 The deal, which would see combat operations stop temporarily, would also allow a substantial increase in the amount of humanitarian assistance entering the enclave. Karen Deyoung, Washington Post, 19 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'assistance.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English assistence, assistance, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Medieval Latin assistentia "presence, participation, guidance," going back to Late Latin, "aid," noun derivative of Latin assistent-, assistens, present participle of assistere "to take up a position near, stand by, stand by as a supporter or advocate" — more at assist entry 1

Note: In the case of both this word and assistant Modern English has chosen the French form with -a- in the suffix rather than Latin -e-.

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of assistance was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near assistance

Cite this Entry

“Assistance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


as·​sis·​tance ə-ˈsis-tən(t)s How to pronounce assistance (audio)
: the act of assisting
also : the help given

More from Merriam-Webster on assistance

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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