welfare

noun
wel·​fare | \ ˈwel-ˌfer How to pronounce welfare (audio) \

Definition of welfare

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the state of doing well especially in respect to good fortune, happiness, well-being, or prosperity must look out for your own welfare
2a : aid in the form of money or necessities for those in need
b : an agency or program through which such aid is distributed

welfare

adjective

Definition of welfare (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or concerned with welfare and especially with improvement of the welfare of disadvantaged social groups welfare legislation
2 : receiving public welfare benefits welfare families

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Synonyms & Antonyms for welfare

Synonyms: Noun

good, interest, weal, well-being

Antonyms: Noun

ill-being

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Examples of welfare in a Sentence

Noun

He wants to do away with welfare. I have your welfare at heart. The welfare of all the orphans was at stake. She donates to organizations concerned about animal welfare.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Those concerns were a factor in the Legislature creating a new child welfare agency last year. Allegra Abramo, The Seattle Times, "Youth often become homeless just after leaving juvenile detention. Can Washington state really stop it?," 29 Mar. 2019 The city’s child welfare agency took her son and placed him with a relative, according to police officials. Zolan Kanno-youngs, WSJ, "N.Y. Peace Officers Who Tried to Wrest Child From Mother Placed on Modified Duty," 10 Dec. 2018 Solis says all allegations were shared with the state's child welfare agency. Fox News, "Utah diocese: 16 priests accused of sex abuse since 1990," 14 Sep. 2018 Unaccompanied children often are received by the country’s child welfare agency, who facilitate the reunification. Dara Lind, Vox, "ICE agents pressured parents to be deported with their children — then separated them again when they refused," 29 July 2018 Veganism is for the girl from the ‘hood, single moms, welfare recipients, immigrants, and those at the intersections of all those identities. Amy Quichiz, SELF, "10 Vegans of Color on What Being Vegan Means to Them," 6 Jan. 2019 Policy makers have privatized parts of the health-care system, introduced for-profit schools along with school vouchers, and reduced welfare benefits. Jesús Fernández-villaverde And Lee E. Ohanian, WSJ, "How Sweden Overcame Socialism," 9 Jan. 2019 In some places, the local authorities require young adults to complete an internet literacy course to receive welfare benefits, such as a monthly stipend. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Why we can’t stop debating whether Facebook sells data," 14 Dec. 2018 The authorities allegedly forced the believers to sign the forms or risk being expelled from school or loosing welfare benefits. Lukas Mikelionis, Fox News, "Chinese officials burn bibles, close churches, force Christian to denounce faith amid 'escalating' crackdown," 10 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Even overtly welfare-ish Medicaid payments—originally intended to provide care for poor children—now go largely to long-term care for mainly middle-class elderly. Eric B. Schnurer, The Atlantic, "'It's the Grandparents Stealing From the Grandchildren'," 12 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'welfare.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of welfare

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for welfare

Noun

Middle English, from the phrase wel faren to fare well

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Statistics for welfare

Last Updated

16 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for welfare

The first known use of welfare was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for welfare

welfare

noun

English Language Learners Definition of welfare

: a government program for poor or unemployed people that helps pay for their food, housing, medical costs, etc.
: the state of being happy, healthy, or successful

welfare

noun
wel·​fare | \ ˈwel-ˌfer How to pronounce welfare (audio) \

Kids Definition of welfare

1 : the state of being or doing well especially in relation to happiness, well-being, or success
2 : aid in the form of money or necessities for people in need

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Comments on welfare

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