June 27, 2022

Self Sufficiency

Alanna O'Neill

Hello and welcome! Thank you for logging on to learn more about what it means to be self-sufficient and why it matters! 

As defined by Merriam Webster, being self-sufficient refers to the ability to maintain oneself without outside aid, or more simply, to be capable of providing for one's own needs. This may seem a little vague or difficult to quantify, but there is a self-sufficiency standard created by the University of Washington to clarify exactly what it takes to be self-sufficient. This standard establishes what level of income working families need to make to meet their necessities without any public or private assistance. These basic needs include housing, childcare, food, transportation, health care, taxes, and other expenses such as phone bills or household items. This standard was created by Dr. Diana Pearce in the mid-1990sin response to the disproportionate number of women living in poverty. This standard can serve as a guide for women to understand what level of income is adequate to provide for basic living costs depending on the size, age, and location of their families. This standard has been revolutionary in deciding eligibility for various government assistance programs.

Now that we know what it means to be self-sufficient, let's talk about becoming self-sufficient. The path to becoming self-sufficient is a journey that may require learning new skills, support networks, and assistance programs. This is a lot to navigate and can be overwhelming. The Resource Center has many programs to help you on your journey to becoming self-sufficient including:  

  • Classes and workshops     on a range of topics including finances, relationships, and management
  • Work-building skill teachings covering     topics such as how to write a resume and how to best nail an interview
  • Various support groups    


Additionally, various aid program scan assist you as you grow in your journey to self-sufficiency that theResource Center can help you learn about and navigate.  

As mentioned above, self-sufficiency is important financially to provide for one's needs. However, there are also many psychological benefits to being self-sufficient. Being self-sufficient can improve self-esteem, increase feelings of fulfillment and worthiness, and heighten happiness and sociability. Self-sufficiency is extremely important in building independence and establishing a secure future.  

If you are ready to start working on becoming self-sufficient and would like to learn more about how the ResourceCenter can help, please don't hesitate to reach out! We look forward to interacting with you soon.  






Self-sufficient Definition &Meaning—Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Retrieved February 4, 2022, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/self-sufficient

Taylor, S. (2013, March 25).Self-Sufficiency: An Essential Aspect of Well-Being | Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/out-the-darkness/201303/self-sufficiency-essential-aspect-well-being

Washington State Center for Women’sWelfare. (n.d.). Self Sufficiency Standard. Self Sufficiency Standard.Retrieved February 4, 2022, from http://www.selfsufficiencystandard.org/