What is BERRI?

BERRI is an easy to use online questionnaire designed to help identify children's needs, with tools to track how they change over time. This increases insight for carers, allowing them to make greater impact on the child's functioning and wellbeing. You can zoom in to target and track specific issues on BERRI, or zoom out to give an overview of the data for a group or service, allowing organisations to evidence improved outcomes, and commissioners to choose the right placement.

Our unique questionnaire asks about the child in everyday language that gets underneath behaviour. The comprehensive assessment covers five domains:

  • Behaviour
  • Emotional wellbeing
  • Risk (to self and others)
  • Relationships
  • Indicators (of psychiatric or neurodevelopmental conditions)

Using BERRI regularly lets you see the progress children are making in your care.

BERRI also lets you "zoom in" to target and track specific concerns, and "zoom out" to get an overview of the data, including a handy manager's report that colour codes who is making progress.


BERRI is the only online assessment tool to cover mental health, behaviour, emotional wellbeing, relationships, risk and attachment. It was developed by a clinician with extensive experience of Looked After Children and those with complex needs through focus groups with foster carers and residential care staff, and a variety of other professionals.

Our questionnaire is written in everyday language and can be used by carers to gain a comprehensive understanding of the child’s:

  • Behaviour
  • Emotional wellbeing
  • Risk (to self and others)
  • Relationships
  • Indicators (of psychiatric or neurodevelopment conditions)

We recommend using the full BERRI at least four times per year, as this allows large changes to be identified and provides useful organisational data. The tracking system can be used daily or weekly to "zoom in" on the changes within particular areas of concern, or to see whether interventions are effective.


The BERRI system produces a number of different outputs to make the data immediately useful:

  • Automated report, giving scores along with basic advice about each of the 5 domains of need
  • Spider plot illustrating the child’s score on the 5 domains
  • Overlay on the chart to show change since last assessment

BERRI Spider Plot

  • Ability to identify specific goals to address, and track them in more detail over time
  • Graphs to visualise change in target behaviours over time, and allow identification of patterns

BERRI Tracking Chart

Getting an overview

The BERRI system can help to keep an overview of all children who are the responsibility of a particular organisation like a Local Authority or placement provider.


  • It can generate summary information about the needs of the population (including the potential for custom reports eg how many children self-harm, demonstrate physical aggression, or are at risk of CSE?)
  • Information about change over time, taking account of life events (including “traffic light tables” of who is making progress and who needs additional input due to unexplained deterioration)
  • The BERRI system can help to make decisions about which type of placement to use, as we are collecting data about the scores that can be managed within adoptive families, foster placements, residential homes, secure units and other types of placements.
  • For example, some young people may have profiles that suggest they need residential care, and will no longer need to go via multiple foster placement breakdowns to get it. Likewise some young people in residential care may have settled to the extent that stepping down to foster placements is possible.
  • BERRI data will soon give us evidence about which placement pathways work and which don’t.
  • BERRI provides a means to quantify the “value added” by various services or placement providers.
  • We will soon have norms for the amount of change that typically occurs in the BERRI profile for children of each age group, placement type or level of complexity.
  • We can then see whether particular interventions or placements improve these scores.
  • This will allow providers to evidence the efficacy of their services, and commissioners to make informed choices about which placements and services to commission

Why use BERRI?

High level of satisfaction from service managers, care staff, social workers, commissioners, Ofsted inspectors.

This care pathway and the BERRI "set a new gold standard for our members" -
Jonathan Stanley, CEO of the Independent Children's Homes Association.

The BERRI is "the missing link in the residential care sector" -
Sir Martin Narey, government advisor who reviewed residential care in the UK.

see more testimonials

Placements using BERRI can evidence an average 14% improvement in score for children’s needs over six months of using the pathway

Learn more about how BERRI can work for you by clicking the appropriate link: