Say in the past two years. Only use last if saying you mean final e.g. in the last two years of her life…


Not ‘learned’. So: He had certainly learnt his lesson…, A learnt behaviour.

leprosy community

The preferred term for a community made up primarily of people affected by leprosy. Leprosy colony may be acceptable in India where the word colony does not have a negative connotation. Check with the relevant Programmes Officer if unsure.


Fewer is used before a plural noun. Less is used before a singular (uncount) noun.

Yes: fewer people, fewer countries, less money, less time.
Yes: Fewer than one-fifth of the staff were involved, less than one-fifth of the cake was eaten.
No: less people or less countries.


  • He weighed less than 40kg (where fewer would sound silly).
  • Fewer than half the people voted in favour (people only come in whole numbers).
  • Less than 50 per cent of people voted in favour (because it could be 48.5 per cent, not just 48 or 49 per cent).

like/such as

Like means similar to and is general. Such as is specific.

We discussed issues like climate change implies you discussed those that were similar to it, but not climate change itself.

If you discussed climate change plus stigma and sanitation, say: We discussed issues such as climate change....


When writing about people we support, never reveal exactly where they live. It’s ok to name the province/re.g.ion/state, but not the town or village.

Yes: Antonio, a farmer living in Cabo Delgado
No: Antonio, a farmer living in Katapua village

Yes: Priya, who lives in northern Sri Lanka
No: Priya, who lives in Vavuniya, northern Sri Lanka

long-term (adjective)

Hyphen, e.g. the long-term effects.

long term (adverb)

No hyphen, e.g. in the long term.


The caps are not needed, even if a Bible passage you are quoting uses them. Use a capital L, but keep the rest of the word lower case.