Kemi Badenoch has been appointed Children and Families Minister as part of the new Prime Ministers’ drastic reshuffle.

The Saffron Waldon MP was appointed following Nadhim Zahawi’s move to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, after approximately 18 months in the role. Mr Zahawi said the new minister will be “a real champion for our most vulnerable children”.

Adoption UK’s chief executive, Dr Sue Armstrong Brown, has already written to Mrs Badenoch to wish her well in her ministerial role and seek early engagement to discuss the challenges faced by adopters.  

The charity has already challenged the new minister to use her first year in office to make ambitious changes. These include retaining the Adoption Support Fund until 2030; acting on the recommendations from Edward Timpson’s recent review of school exclusions; and publishing a new national Adoption Strategy with the views of adopters at its heart.

In a wide-ranging brief, Mrs Badenoch will be responsible for adoption, special educational needs and local authority performance. She will work under the new Secretary of State for Education, Gavin Williamson who replaced Damian Hinds last week.

Mrs Badenoch was born in London and spent much of her childhood in Nigeria and the US, before returning to the UK aged 16. She worked in IT and banking before entering politics. She became MP for Saffron Waldon following the 2017 snap general election. Prior to that she was a member of the London Assembly.

Adoption UK enjoyed a constructive relationship with Mrs Badenoch’s predecessor. In October 2018, Zahawi participated in a roundtable discussion with adoptive parents, convened by Adoption UK. He also provided a video address to the 400 delegates at Adoption UK’s most recent annual conference.