News Release

‘That’s My Story’

Young Queenslanders learn about their family histories as they video interview parents and grandparents

Queensland teenagers are questioning their parents and grandparents — in a good way — as they take part in a state-wide initiative to video and share stories from their heritage for National Family History Month (August).

The experiences of parents, grandparents, extended family and members of their local community are being filmed, edited and shared on social media by local youth using nothing but their imagination, smartphones and the hashtag #thatsmystory.

15-year-old Emma Oostuysen from Cleveland, Brisbane, said of her experience, "It felt good using my skills to preserve a story, a piece of family history. I started thinking what other stories are out there waiting to be told." Watch her video at

Thornlands teenager, Brandon Mangakahia, interviewed his grandfather John (Tim) Mangakahia for his video.

"I've heard some of grandpa’s stories before, but it just felt different this time," he said. 

"It has increased my understanding of his life and helped me recognise how the way he has lived has influenced the way I have been raised in my family." 

Watch Brandon’s video — titled “Grandpa’s Watermelon” — featuring his grandfather. 

Some congregations have chosen to set aside a youth night or Sunday evening in August to record
and edit the videos.

Brisbane Latter-day Saint leader, Elder Keith Walker, said, "This isn't just a Church project or a Queensland project. We hope families across Australia will start talking with each other and capture their unique stories for generations to come."

To find out how to submit your video or to view #thatsmystory videos go to

Family history, or genealogy, is close to the heart of millions of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints due to the belief that family relationships can endure beyond death. 

Latter-day Saints and millions of others use the Church’s family history website,, to learn more about their ancestors.

Church congregations across Australia will host a variety of free family history-themed activities, open to the public, during Family History Month.

Some of the activities include:


175th Anniversary Celebrations
Saturday, 8 August, 2-5pm
120 Gage Street, Firle
South Australia Celebrating Together
Country of Origin displays and cultural performances


Family History Discovery Day 
Saturday, 15 August, 1-4pm.
76 Cathies Lane, Wantirna South.

Samoan Family History — for Samoans by Samoans
Saturday, 8 August, 2-3:30pm.
285 Heidelberg Road, Northcote.

Recording Family Stories
Saturday, 29 August, 2-3:30pm. 
122 Glenroy Road, Glenroy


Brisbane Stake Family History Open House
27-29 August 10am to 3pm. 
200 River Terrace, Kangaroo Point.
Exhibiting family history and methods of collecting and compiling your own history.

Staffed by volunteers, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints runs around 4,500 family history centres in 126 countries. Admission to the centres is free and they are open to members of the public.

Latter-day Saints around Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific are taking part this year in the “My 15 in 15” initiative where individuals gather information about their parents, grandparents and great-grandparents in 2015.  The 15th person in the “15” is the individual doing the research.

For help with your family history go to or a visit a Latter-day Saint family history centre.

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