welfare

1 of 2

noun

wel·​fare ˈwel-ˌfer How to pronounce welfare (audio)
1
: the state of doing well especially in respect to good fortune, happiness, well-being, or prosperity
must look out for your own welfare
2
a
: aid in the form of money or necessities for those in need
b
: an agency or program through which such aid is distributed

welfare

2 of 2

adjective

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

Example Sentences

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.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Service agencies for older adults under contract with the state Department of Elder Affairs keep lists of people to help plan for storms and evacuate, and to conduct welfare checks on clients after a storm has passed. Jon Schuppe, NBC News, 22 Nov. 2022 When asked which should be the most important factor in immigrant admissions, 50% of Republicans cited not needing public welfare benefits, far more than the 19% who cited eagerness to integrate into American society, which came second on the list. Reihan Salam, WSJ, 18 Nov. 2022 The media outlet Mississippi Today, which has covered the scheme for several years, has reported that at least $5 million of the welfare funds were channeled to the new facility. Eric Levenson And Dianne Gallagher, CNN, 22 Oct. 2022 That amount of money was also allegedly taken from federal welfare funds. Amethyst Tate, Peoplemag, 12 Oct. 2022 The state sued Prevacus and CEO Jake VanLandingham in May wanting $2.1 million returned after the company got federal welfare funds. Scooby Axson, USA TODAY, 30 Sep. 2022 Other possibilities include payments from fraternal organizations, lodges, clubs, union welfare funds, retirement plans and employers. Kevin Brasler, Washington Post, 29 Sep. 2022 Favre allegedly conspired with former Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant to divert faderal welfare funds toward the construction of a new $5 million-plus volleyball stadium at the University of Southern Mississippi. Todd Spangler, Variety, 25 Sep. 2022 Text messages show former Mississippi Gov. & others helped Brett Favre secure at least $5 mil of the state’s welfare funds to build a new volleyball stadium at the Univ. Emily Wagster Pettus, BostonGlobe.com, 14 Sep. 2022
Adjective
Moderate Democrats fear pro-welfare and anti-business labels. John Harwood, CNN, 19 Sep. 2021 Starting near the end of the last century, the rhetoric of business-minded reform increasingly cloaked the politics of deregulation, anti-welfare cutbacks, and austerity. Kyle Edward Williams, The New Republic, 9 Dec. 2020 Layers of state bureaucracy, outdated computer systems, and, in some states, anti-welfare attitudes kept timely help out of the reach of many. Tracey Lindeman, Fortune, 23 Oct. 2020 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, 12 Dec. 2017 See More

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.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English, from the phrase wel faren to fare well

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near welfare

Cite this Entry

“Welfare.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/welfare. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

welfare

noun

wel·​fare
ˈwel-ˌfa(ə)r,
-ˌfe(ə)r
1
: the state of doing well especially in relation to happiness, well-being, or success
must look out for your own welfare
2
a
: aid in the form of money or necessities for people in need
b
: a program through which such aid is distributed
welfare adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on welfare

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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