social service


: an activity designed to promote social well-being
specifically : organized philanthropic assistance (such as counseling, job training, or financial support)
It operates like a mall with specialty shops, treating students like customers, or the adult clients of a social service, rather than as young people in need of an education for a worthy life. Joseph Featherstone
Most states are struggling with skimpy resources and a system of uncoordinated social services that is totally inadequate to serve a population of individuals whose needs are bottomless. Constance Holden
often used before another noun
social service agencies
a social service project

Examples of social service in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web One menu item is a donation to the Pebbles Project, which provides education, health care, and social services to farmworkers’ children. Dorothy J. Gaiter, Travel + Leisure, 9 Nov. 2023 Some of these are entrenched, like proper access to social services, infrastructure, and job opportunities. Clem De Pressigny, Vogue, 8 Nov. 2023 The new speaker will also come in with a little more than a month to push through funding legislation to prevent a partial government shutdown, which would have rippling consequences for millions of employees and recipients of social services. Benjamin Siegel, ABC News, 12 Oct. 2023 In addition to its militant activity, Hamas provides social services for people in Gaza, such as education and medical care. Yasmine Salam, NBC News, 10 Oct. 2023 Of the 65 indicators gauging progress at social services, slightly more than half had gotten worse, according to the report. Emma G. Fitzsimmons, New York Times, 29 Sep. 2023 In the 1980s, when the country’s debt ballooned, politicians chose to cut back on a social services that would benefit women and employ them. Jason Horowitz, New York Times, 9 Nov. 2023 Applicants can submit their applications online or through local departments of social services. Brady Knox, Washington Examiner, 31 Oct. 2023 Johnson has also attacked the idea of social services, claiming that the only entity entitled to provide care is the church, not the government. Tori Otten, The New Republic, 31 Oct. 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1761, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of social service was in 1761

Dictionary Entries Near social service

Cite this Entry

“Social service.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2023.

More from Merriam-Webster on social service

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