Our Proud history

Helping communities across Melbourne’s south east for more than 50 years.

We began as three separate organisations – Springvale Community Aid and Advice Bureau (SCAAB), Dandenong Community Advisory Bureau (DCAB) and Southern Ethnic Advocacy and Advisory Council (SEAAC) – merging to become South East Community Links (SECL) back in 2015. 

Since becoming one organisation, we’ve been able to further improve outcomes for people in our community who face barriers and difficulty, to live our vision to ensure every person counts and every system is fair.

A brief timeline of our combined progress:

The 1970s: Our beginnings

The Springvale Community Aid and Advice Bureau (SCAAB) opened at 5 Osborne Avenue Springvale and the Dandenong Community Advisory Bureau (DCAB) opened at the Dandenong Old Town Hall.

The 1980s: Our momentum grows

Victorian Premier, the Hon. John Cain, opened the renovated 5 Osborne Avenue site funded through the RE Ross Foundation, Myer Foundation and Springvale Council. Prime Minister the Hon. R.J Hawke launched the Australian Government’s social justice statement ‘Towards a Fairer Australia’ at 5 Osborne Avenue.

The 1990s: Expanding our influence

The Southern Ethnic Advisory Advocacy Council (SEAAC) was established, giving ethnic communities a voice on local and national issues. Financial counselling services and major advocacy projects were established.

The 2000s: Continuing our growth

The Youthlinks program began operating for multicultural youth, we expanded refugee and migrants’ settlement services especially for the growing South Sudanese community and a youth housing program established for families on low incomes and young people

The 2010s: Combining to deliver enhanced outcomes

SCAAB, DCAB, SEAAC merge to become South East Community Links (SECL). We became the largest provider of financial counselling for diverse communities in Victoria.

The 2020s: Adapting to unprecedented demand

We adapted our operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure all services remained available remotely, with doors still open for essential services such as emergency relief. We are the largest provider of emergency relief in Victoria.
And our future is bright, with our Strategic Plan aiming to triple the positive impact we have for the communities we work alongside by 2025.