Release date: 16 March 2024

On Thursday 14th of March 2024, members of the Sunshine Coast legal fraternity raised a record-breaking $50,000 for the Suncoast Community Legal Service (SCLS) at a wine dinner held at Venue 114, with every cent raised going towards ensuring access to justice for the most vulnerable in the local community.

Now in its fourth year, the annual fundraising event — hosted by leading Queensland compensation law firm, Travis Schultz & Partners (TSP) — welcomed more than 200 guests who generously participated in a lively auction while tasting some of Australia’s best wines.

The SCLS, founded in 1984, celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. As an independent community organisation, SCLS serves as a first point of contact for free advice and referral services and relies on the support and generosity of Sunshine Coast lawyers, volunteers and the public.

TSP Managing Partner, Travis Schultz said this year’s fundraising and networking wine dinner did not disappoint to bring that much-needed support.

“Thanks to the generosity of the guests, event sponsors, supporters and friends who have once again come together to help, we have now collectively raised $136,923 from this annual wine dinner over the last four years.

“We are grateful to the community and profession for their ongoing involvement to support the vital work of the SCLS, meaning more people can get help with their legal problems before the issue becomes overwhelming.

“Everyone in our community should have access to legal advice when they need it, and that’s why the Suncoast Community Legal Service is so important to the Sunshine Coast region,” Mr Schultz said.

In the past 40 years, SCLS has provided each year an average of 3,000 free advice sessions to the local community, 2,000 information activities, and 18 community legal education opportunities.

Noela L’Estrange President of the SCLS, and former CEO of the Queensland Law Society, said it relies heavily on the support of partnerships, fundraisers, and volunteers to make it possible to continue offering services such as these to the Sunshine Coast’s 350,000-plus residents.

“The community is growing in numbers every year and with it, so does the demand to help financially disadvantaged people with free legal advice,” Ms L’Estrange said.

“This year being our 40th anniversary, is also a celebration of the 90-plus volunteers across the Coast who donate their time to those who can’t pay for their own legal advice. Our

community of legal volunteers across the Sunshine Coast have given countless hours over the years to make justice accessible to all.

“Partners like Travis Schultz & Partners, and annual fundraisers like this event, raise funds that go toward our Community Lawyer Program. These programs run in seven locations across the Sunshine Coast including Maroochydore, Caloundra, Nambour, Noosa, Beerwah, Maleny, and Pomona.

“This work directly impacts the community’s resilience and wellbeing, and our biggest supporters in the legal fraternity understand this, and for that, we are indebted,” Ms L’Estrage said.

This year, special guests Mayor Mark Jamieson and Mayoress Lorrell Jamieson were welcomed for the second year, along with the Deputy Chief Magistrate Stephen Courtney.

The inspiring keynote address was delivered by Robyna May, an author and legal technology consultant who spoke about the transformative impact of AI within the legal industry.

The audience was treated to a three-course meal and lessons in wine pairing by Garth Eather, with a selection of premium wines by Mareeba Park Wines – who have won more than 500 medals at Australian and international wine shows and are rated a Top 100 Australian Winery by renowned wine critic, James Halliday.

Guests enjoyed a lively auction, led by Grant Smith, with five exclusive items, from luxury mountain escapes to golf experiences that were generously donated by sponsors Coastline BMW, Toomey Family Law, SV Partners, Sunstate Jewellers and Meerea Park Wines.

To find out more about the Suncoast Community Legal Service, visit