Ethical Network

Join a growing network of societies in Cambridge seeking to combat social and environmental issues.

Informaton icon Join a growing network of societies in Cambridge seeking to combat social and environmental issues.

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About the Ethical Network

The Ethical Network is a community of student societies working on social and environmental issues, campaigning, fundraising, volunteering and promoting engagement with the challenges in which they are involved. To help these groups increase their reach, impact, effectiveness and long-term sustainability, there are a whole range of resources and opportunities available to all the societies in the Network, including:

  • Free publicity - on the weekly e-bulletin which goes out to over 800 students, through social media and on our website
  • Great opportunities to network with other groups, from student societies to national organisations
  • Training and resources for running events and projects

Join the Ethical Network

If you'd like your society to be part of the Ethical Network please fill in this short form.

Your society must be Cambridge-based and have a social or environmental focus for you to be eligible to join.

If you have any questions or would like further contact details for the societies in the network, please email [email protected]

Umbrella groups for social action

Cambridge Hub Tackling educational disadvantage, homelessness, refugee integration, climate change and more through: Practical volunteering: our Edible Garden (community gardening project in Murray Edwards) and School’s Plus (literacy and humanities mentoring for educationally disadvantaged school children) Skilled placements: Social Innovation Programme (6-week charity consultancy training), Social Impact Internship Scheme Critical engagement: Our conferences, events and workshops such as Freshers Feasts and Food for Thought Incubation: We support university societies to grow and network through our Ethical Network

Cambridge Students RAG Appeal (Raising and Giving) Organise fundraising events for students throughout the year to raise money for 10 chosen charities and other causes. Events include ‘Blind Date’, ‘Jailbreak’, ‘Formal Freedom’ and ‘LOST’ as well as challenges & college events.

Student Community Action SCA Coordinating student volunteering opportunities with disadvantaged groups in the local community. More than 70 volunteering opportunities, as well as student committee positions.

CUSU Ethical Affairs (Cambridge University Students Union) The team supports student campaigns and JCR/MCR Green & Charity Officers, coordinating, representing, and empowering them to act.

Environment: Energy, Sustainability & Investments

Climate and Sustainability Forum This conference is organised and run by a group of students who are dedicated to spreading the word about climate change and environmental issues. The forum has been held for the past six years with previous titles including ‘The Heat is On: Innovation Now!’, ‘Climate Change, Culture Change’ and ‘Global to Local’. Run with support from Cambridge Hub.

University of Cambridge Environment and Energy Section The Environment and Energy Section is responsible for promoting sound policies and practices throughout the University to protect and enhance the local and global environment. Initiatives include the Cambridge Green Challenge and Living Laboratory for Sustainability.

Living Laboratory for Sustainability The ‘Living Lab’ provides opportunities for Cambridge students to improve environmental sustainability on the University estate through projects, internships and research.

Student Switch-Off Encourages students to save energy with information on recycling and saving energy and water. Offer competitions and opportunities to win prizes for yourself and money for your JCR/MCR summer garden party.

Cambridge Carbon Footprint Cambridge Carbon Footprint works to raise awareness of climate change and support people in moving to low-carbon living. You can get involved by volunteering, collaborating and coming along to events. One of our bigger projects is Circular Cambridge which features events and activities exploring progressive ways to design, manufacture, access, repair and reuse the things that we want and need in our lives. It aims to tackle throw-away culture and support people to 'live well with less stuff'.

Cambridge Zero Carbon Engage students and members of the local community with the climate crisis. Launched and run a divestment campaign, calling on the University of Cambridge to completely divest from the fossil fuel industry.

Positive Investment Cambridge A broad-based coalition that works to ensure that the University of Cambridge and its Colleges engage in responsible, transparent and accountable investment for a positive social, environmental and economic global impact.

Cambridge University Energy Network The Cambridge University Energy Network (CUEN) is a student-led special interest group for undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Cambridge. CUEN aims to cultivate a passion for energy through an annual conference in April 2019. We believe energy is fundamental to our quality of life and have many projects on our horizon that encourage hands-on learning and energy literacy.

Cambridge University Environmental Consulting Society Help organisations alter their practices in cost efficient and environmentally responsible ways through student-run projects, while simultaneously giving our members genuine consultancy experience.

Green Impact Cambridge Green Impact is the University's environmental accreditation scheme. It supports and encourages departments and colleges across the University in reducing their environmental impacts.

Transition Cambridge Transition Cambridge joins the hundreds of Transition towns across the UK, and the thousands of them around the world in an effort to make more resilient and sustainable communities.

Environment: Conservation

Cambridge University Marine Conservation Society Our society wants to raise awareness in and around Cambridge about Marine Conservation through talks, screenings and socials. We also want to put pressure on the university through a network of students to cut down on harmful practices such as Single-use plastic and unsustainable seafood.

Cambridge University Wildlife Conservation Trust Focuses on raising awareness of global and local conservation issues, and actively supporting grassroots conservation projects in East Africa.

Cambridge University Nature Society Our society provides nature oriented talks and trips, promoting conservation and social responsibility for animals and our environment.

Environment: Ethical Consumerism, Food Waste and Food Shortage

Cambridge University Vegan Society Aim to support current vegans and promote veganism in Cambridge. We organise regular social events for vegans and non-vegans, such as Potlucks, as well as informative events, for instance Film-Screenings or Vegan Intro Meetings. To spread the word and make a difference, we also have frequent campaigning events and are planning to work together with CU to increase vegan options.

Cambridge Sustainable Food (CSF) A network of public, private and community organisations in Cambridge and the surrounding villages, working to promote a sustainable food system (food that is good for us and good for the planet). We work with businesses, councils, community organisations and individuals. There are plenty of opportunities for students to get involved and help with the work of CSF.

Foodcycle A national charity that combines volunteers, surplus food and spare kitchen spaces to create tasty, nutritious meals for people at risk of food poverty and social isolation.

CU Foodbank Society Aims to promote students, colleges, and any institutions or individuals affiliated with the University of Cambridge to donate both perishable and non-perishable food to food banks.


Wintercomfort Cambridge: Wintercomfort supports those who are homeless or at risk of losing their homes by offering basic amenities, opportunities for education, development and recreation and a range of services designed to help them achieve greater autonomy.

Jimmy’s Cambridge Work with the local community, volunteers and partner agencies to deliver 24/7 emergency accommodation and supported housing for those who would otherwise be homeless or vulnerably housed.

Cambridge Streetbite Streetbite is a student-run project that helps the homeless community in Cambridge. We go around the town offering hot drinks, food and a chat to those who live on the streets, and you can volunteer to do as many or as few shifts as you like, depending on how much time you have.

Cambridge Homeless Outreach Programme Our aim is to do something practical to help homeless people in Cambridge. Our main activity consists of preparing and distributing tea, coffee, sandwiches and fruit to those we meet on the streets. It is also really important to develop relationships with the homeless community. Taking the time to have a chat as the food is distributed can make the biggest difference of all.

Cambridge Cyrenians Provides a range of accommodation, support and specialist services for homeless people. Aim to offer a real alternative to traditional homeless hostels; offers small shared houses where residents are encouraged to take responsibility for their own lives.

Just Love Cambridge Our vision is to inspire and release every Christian student to pursue the Biblical call to social justice. The best way to find out more is to find us on social media, look at our website, and sign up to our mailing list. Our committee are all listed on the website, so feel free to drop one of us a message, we'd be very happy to talk!


Cambridge Hub Schools Plus (check back in next year when this project is runnning again!) Coordinated by the Cambridge Hub; aims to help young people to achieve their academic potential by matching them with university student tutors. Runs tutoring projects that focus on Literacy, History, debating and public speaking, and English as a second language (ESL).

Future of Sentience Cambridge: Empowering the next generation of leaders to steer technological development wisely and improve the long-run future of sentient life. Students can work on projects (from policy papers to AI research) with mentors such as the cofounder of Skype. Students can also come to discussion groups, workshops and other events.

Health and Wellbeing

Student Minds Cambridge Cambridge branch of the UK’s student mental health charity, Student Minds. Aim to raise awareness of mental heath issues across Cambridge University by running campaigns, speaker events, fundraisers and through social media campaigns.

Peer2Peer Cambridge A student-run programme offering confidential, informal support to undergraduates, graduates, and post-docs in Cambridge.

Cambridge Nightline (formerly Linkline) Nightline is the night-time listening support and information service for Cambridge and Anglia Ruskin Universities, run by students for students

Cambridge for Consent Cambridge for Consent is a university-wide campaign aimed at celebrating and promoting sexual consent.

Cambridge Marrow Cambridge branch of a national student-run society that aims to help save the lives of people with bone cancer. Marrow works alongside Anthony Nolan, a pioneering charity that recruits people to its bone marrow register and matches potential donors with people in desperate need of a stem cell

Cambridge Pink Week Seeks to make breast cancer awareness a focal cause for the student body. Pink Week is a week of events (February) aimed at raising funds and awareness for Breast Cancer charities.

Healthy Planet Cambridge A group of students and young people from across the UK who work to raise awareness of the links between environmental changes and human health, and advocate for a more sustainable future for everyone.

Students for Global Health Cambridge The Cambridge branch of Students for Global Health (SfGH) - an organisation run by students for students. We are one of over 30 branches across the UK, a student network whose aim is to tackle global and local health inequalities through education, advocacy and community action.

International Volunteering and Campaigning

Cambridge University International Development Society We host events and publish a student written magazine centring around issues of international development in order to create a non-partisan dialogue. Events are open attendance and students are also recruited to write for the magazine on a rolling basis.

International Development Conference An annual student-run conference which brings students and professionals into contact with those working at the forefront of international development, whether formulating policy, developing new strategies on the ground, or expanding the academic discipline.

Centre for Global Equality focuses the resources available in global centres of excellence such as Cambridge on evolving innovative solutions to global challenges. We contribute to greater global equality by improving access for the underprivileged to the intellectual, social and financial resources usually reserved for the elite.

Oxfam Cambridge University (Oxcam) Campaigning, fundraising and raising awareness as part of the global Oxfam network to end extreme poverty.

Cambridge Student Action for Refugees (STAR) Part of a national network of student groups working to improve the lives of refugees and asylum seekers in the UK.

Cambridge University Amnesty International An active student group campaigning for human rights worldwide as a part of the Amnesty International movement.

Cambridge University Refugee Aid and Action Group (RE:action) A group that focusses on what Cambridge can do, as a privileged community, to support the lives of refugees and migrants in need of protection. As well as working with NGOs in the field, they have partnered with CAMCRAG (Cambridge Convoy Refugee Action Group) to coordinate Calais-specific volunteer work.

Cambridge Development Initiative Provides opportunities for students to engage in the design, development and implementation of projects for local communities in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Education Partnerships Africa (EPA) Works with rural communities in East Africa to improve the quality of secondary education. We enable talented university students in the UK to experience grassroots international development and provide them with the awareness, knowledge and skills to become leaders of the future.

Afrinspire Student Society Afrinspire supports indigenous development initiatives across East Africa. Working closely with community leaders to help with the provision of computers and educational materials, funding for schools and scholarships, helping set up new enterprise schemes, disseminating sustainable agriculture techniques, or financing the construction of water tanks, we work from the grassroots to reduce poverty.

CU Help Works in close collaboration with HELP; Helambu Education & Livelihood Project, a grassroots Nepali-based development NGO set up in 2008 to work to improve educational standards in the remote Helambu region of Nepal.

Cambridge PEN Campaigns for freedom of expression and human rights for writers around the world, organising petitions, awareness-raising events, and letter-writing meetings.

CU SOS Children's Villages Raises awareness and to fundraises for the CU SOS, which is the world's largest NGO working with orphaned and abandoned children. It is an exciting opportunity for any students (from Cambridge University and ARU alike) who are interested in event planning, international development, charity administration and NGO work. The UK head office is based in Cambridge.

Students Supporting Street Kids (SSSK) Student-run registered charity raising funds and awareness for grassroots NGOs supporting children living on the street. These NGOs are located in 13 different countries worldwide providing shelter, food kitchens and holistic care to homeless children.

Ethical Careers & Effective Altruism

80,000 Hours Cambridge A society for students who want their career to have a positive impact on the world, and want to base their career choices on the best available evidence. Provide talks with people who have used their career to have a huge impact, and run frequent socials and discussion groups to build a thriving community of people who want to do the most good.

Giving What We Can: Cambridge Evaluates charities and builds a community of members who want to donate their income to the most effective organisations in the world. In Cambridge we organise events with speakers in relevant areas. including the heads of some of the world's leading charities, as well as socials and discussion groups. All are welcome!

Social Change Through Innovation

Impact Through Innovation Cambridge We are a society that aims to cultivate a greater interest for impactful innovation amongst Cambridge students. We do this by: organising events to enable people to create diverse networks they enjoy being part of and might want to work with in the future; connecting members to new ideas and consolidating ongoing initiatives through our online repository; exposing our members to resources and development opportunities to help further their aims.

Strategic Partner

Strategic Partner