The grassroots social movements in Hackney making a difference

Social movements are trending. From Extinction Rebellion to #Metoo, the yellow vests in France and Las Tesis in Chile,  citizens are joining hands, protesting and campaigning to challenge institutions on a global or local scale. 

The Hackney community is no stranger to the method, and the people of the borough are creating grass-root social campaign groups doing everything they can to positively change the area in hope of creating a more sustainable, equal and inclusive environment for all. 

Here are four grassroots social movements seeking to make a positive impact on their community.


Digs is a Hackney community campaign group created by renters for renters. 

Fighting against poor quality housing, discrimination, malpractice from landlords and letting agencies and the decrease of housing benefits; this organization has been throughout the years gaining influence and now is known to be one Hackney’s most notorious community group. 

Endorsed by the Hackney Council, Digs provides a support and information platform for private renters and homeless people looking for affordable and secure housing. 

In addition to, actively campaigning for better deals for Hackney’s tenants, Digs also organizes tenant information workshops to make sure tenants know their rights. 

The group also has an online support platform and hosts, support group meeting every last Monday the month.

Becoming a Digs member is free and open to all Hackney renters. 

To get involved, Digs invites you to pop up to one of their meetings taking place every two weeks at 7 pm at the Kingshold Community Centre. 


Hackney Special Education Crisis (HSEC) is a parent-led campaign group battling against the special education needs cuts imposed by the central government. 

HSEC is actively leading protests and advocating for there cause on social media, sharing the stories of families with children with special education needs. 

Dedicated and persistent HSEC takes every issue regarding their cause to Hackney council and is far from afraid to protest, make sure their case is being heard. 

This campaign group has even made the headline a few times and is becoming a reference organization when it comes to the fight against special education needs funding cuts in London.

To get involved, you can join the next HSPEC protest on February 28th at Parliament Square or check out their event schedule on their Facebook page:


Future Hackney is a Photography and film collective run by local young visual storytellers documenting changes and events in the Hackney borough including impacts of the area’s gentrification and protests.

The collective also offers inspirational and educational workshop for the hackney youth; teaching them filmmaking, digital photography, urban history and new documenting technologies. These workshops are aimed at forming young people creatively, creating opportunities that could lead them to employment in the creative media industry. 

Future Hackney works alongside other Hackney-based organization such as Animal Rebellion which who they have collaborated with during the Extinction Rebellion protest in October 2019. 

To find out more about this collective, check out their website: or visit them at their photographic studios on Ridley Road in Dalston, Hackney 


Plastic free Hackney is a local community group wanting to create a cleaner and green borough though the eradication of plastic. 

Created by two mothers who wanted to provide a cleaner and more sustainable environment for their kids, the initiative is organizing community litter picking events to remove plastic from the streets. As well as planting project, bee safe heavens and bug hotels. 

Furthermore, Plastic free Hackney is raising awareness, informing Hackney citizens about the damages made by single-use plastic objects and is working to find more sustainable alternatives. 

In addition to helping to make Hackney a greener borough, this group also wants to create a real sense of community and is calling for the people of Hackney to take care of the area out of love for their home, Hackney. 

To involved, check out Plastic’s free hackney social media pages:

Or attend their monthly neighbourhood picks. 

The next one is March 29 2020 

Leave a Reply