Suncoast Community Legal Service Inc is an independent, non-profit community organisation providing legal advice, referrals and education. Our mission is to provide quality legal services to address disadvantage in the Sunshine Coast community using volunteers and staff. Our service delivery is based on the values of respect, independence, effectiveness, integrity and collaboration.
During our thirty-two years of service we have developed strong community and referral networks across the region. We welcome all opportunities to think and work collaboratively within and across these networks to ensure the best outcomes for our clients.
Suncoast Community Legal Service was founded in November 1984 by local lawyers Ian McAlister, Bruce McDiarmid and Dennis Callinan. Initially operating out of the Maroochy Neighbourhood Centre at Cotton Tree, it hosted legal advice sessions on Monday evenings with start-up funding from the Sunshine Coast Law Association. The first roster consisted of 13 local volunteer lawyers.
In 1992, our Service incorporated as Suncoast Community Legal Service Inc. Co-ordinator, Edna Birleson began to expand services in Maroochydore to include Tuesday evenings and Wednesday lunchtimes. In 2004, an outreach service commenced at the Noosa Leisure Centre. In 2008, an ‘outreach project’ expanded this model to five other communities – Caloundra, Nambour, Landsborough, Maleny and Pomona – allowing local lawyers an opportunity to volunteer within their own communities.