Our Mission:

Painting a Path to Recovery

Emily's Hope is a legacy charity in the name of a talented painter whose life was cut short too soon. We are raising awareness of the opioid epidemic, stopping the stigma of addiction and helping to offset the cost of treatment. With your help, we can offer hope and recovery to more people struggling with addiction. Removing financial barriers is one of the first steps toward restoration, not only of the addict, but of the addict's entire family.


Emily’s Story.

Emily Groth was a talented artist who tragically died at the age of 21 of fentanyl poisoning. Emily was born and raised in Sioux Falls and was a 2015 graduate of O'Gorman High School. She was a gifted student and participated in cheerleading, gymnastics and track. Emily was passionate about her art and was a prolific painter, winning awards and recognition for her work.

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What Happened

Emily's family was in the process of organizing an intervention to get her into treatment after realizing something "wasn't right." Ironically, she was scheduled to be checked into a treatment center three days following her death.

Emily's death on May 16, 2018 was a shock to her family who did not realize she was injecting heroin. The dose Emily used that day, unbeknownst to her, was laced with enough fentanyl to kill several people.



overdose deaths in the united states of america in 2017

According to preliminary 2017 data of overdose deaths involving all drugs according to the National Institute of Drug Abuse


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What We’re Doing:

In coping with the loss of their beautiful daughter and sister, Emily's family is turning heartbreak into action in order to give others hope of recovery from addiction.

Avera addiction care center

The Emily's Hope fund at Avera McKennan Foundation will help offset the cost of treatment and allow more people struggling with addiction to get the help they need. Removing financial barriers and getting people suffering from addiction into proper treatment is the first step toward restoration, not only of the addict, but of the addict's entire family.

art scholarship

The Emily’s Hope Art Scholarship is through the Sioux Falls Community Foundation for aspiring art students. Emily was passionate about her art and a prolific painter. This is a way for Emily’s legacy to live on.


Creating awareness for this problem is key to our mission. Emily’s mother, Angela Kennecke is using her platform as a journalist to share Emily’s story and reduce the stigma surrounding addiction.


From Emily’s Journal:

“Needles take away the pain
Desensitize thoughts
Numb the shame”

Emily’s mother, Angela, found those words in her daughter’s journals after she died. Now her autopsy results have come in. Emily had a lethal dose of fentanyl in her system; an accidental overdose. She thought she was taking heroin. She was, but those levels were low. The heroin was cut with deadly fentanyl, which was more than six times higher than what’s considered safe. 

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Get Involved

Here is how you can get involved:


Sign Up For email alerts

As new research comes out, news about Emily’s Hope and other information related to our mission, we’ll send you an email.

Volunteer opportunities

As Emily’s Hope continues to grow, we will need volunteers. Let us know how you can help volunteer your time and talents.

Make a Donation

Donations are key to the programs we are supporting. From the Avera Addiction Care Center in Sioux Falls, SD to the art scholarship, you choose where your money goes.