Asheville North Carolina

What We Do

We offer supplies and resources to people who use drugs so that they can keep themselves & their communities safer.

We offer Naloxone training for local businesses and organizations.

We conduct volunteer neighborhood needle litter walks to help keep streets safe.

Bold UI and Tech-Inspired Elements Archway

We provide Naloxone and testing supplies

to help folks

stay safe.

We provide people who use drugs with reliable access to supplies for safer smoking and injecting.

When and Where We Do It



Firestorm Books

610 Haywood Road

West Asheville



Sly Grog Lounge

271 Haywood Street

Dwntwn Asheville



Pisgah View Apts

Granada St Bus Stop

West Asheville

Who We Are

Steady began in November 2015 as an "any positive change" support group. Steady founder, Conner Adams, facilitated those group meetings and with the help of friends delivered naloxone and needles throughout Western NC to folks who use drugs and their friends and family.

In the spring of 2016, Conner gathered a group of people together to form Steady Collective's first board. Hill Brown, Steady's director from 2018 to 2021, was part of that founding board.

In initial meetings we excitedly talked about the prospect of House Bill 972 becoming law and making syringe access programs legal in North Carolina. In July, 972 did pass and Steady board members and volunteers began the work of securing sites where comprehensive, nonjudgmental harm reduction services could be provided to folks who use drugs.

In October of 2016, less than a year after Conner's first support group meeting, Steady had its first syringe access outreach day in the back of Firestorm Books in West Asheville.

We still set up shop outside Firestorm Books every Tuesday afternoon. We also now distribute new injecting equipment and naloxone in several other locations in Asheville.

Our new Executive Director, Peyton Daisy (she/her), is dedicated to ensuring Steady's model, one that centers the voices of former and active drug users at every level of the organization, a "nothing about us without us" model, is continued. We believe in solidarity, and the needs and hopes of folks who use drugs come first in everything we do.

What Is Harm Reduction

The following principles are central to harm reduction practice:

  • Accepts, for better and or worse, that licit and illicit drug use is part of our world and chooses to work to minimize its harmful effects rather than simply ignore or condemn them.
  • Understands drug use as a complex, multi-faceted phenomenon that encompasses a continuum of behaviors from severe abuse to total abstinence, and acknowledges that some ways of using drugs are clearly safer than others.
  • Establishes quality of individual and community life and well-being–not necessarily cessation of all drug use–as the criteria for successful interventions and policies.
  • Calls for the non-judgmental, non-coercive provision of services and resources to people who use drugs and the communities in which they live in order to assist them in reducing attendant harm.
  • Ensures that drug users and those with a history of drug use routinely have a real voice in the creation of programs and policies designed to serve them.
  • Affirms drugs users themselves as the primary agents of reducing the harms of their drug use, and seeks to empower users to share information and support each other in strategies which meet their actual conditions of use.
  • Recognizes that the realities of poverty, class, racism, social isolation, past trauma, sex-based discrimination and other social inequalities affect both people’s vulnerability to and capacity for effectively dealing with drug-related harm.
  • Does not attempt to minimize or ignore the real and tragic harm and danger associated with licit and illicit drug use.

Source: Harm Reduction Coalition


Where can I purchase syringes?

North Carolina law allows for the purchase of syringes from a pharmacy without a prescription. They are also available in bulk from Amazon.

Where can I purchase naloxone?

In North Carolina, naloxone is covered by a standing order so that you may purchase it in the form of nasal naloxone (Narcan®) from a pharmacy without a prescription. For more information on pharmacies in your area that comply with the standing order and are committed to preventing overdose deaths, contact us.

Where can I get free syringes and naloxone in WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA?

Buncombe County- Western North Carolina Aids Project (WNCAP)

Madison County- Holler Harm Reduction

Haywood County- NC Harm Reduction Coalition (NCHRC)

Frequently Asked Questions

What do I do if I find a syringe on the ground?

  • Put on gloves
  • Place a puncture-proof container (like an empty laundry detergent or bleach bottle, or a biohazard sharps container) on the ground beside the syringe
  • Using tongs or gloved hands (whichever provides the most control), pick up the syringe by the middle of the barrel
  • Place the syringe into the container, sharp end first
  • Secure the lid of the container
  • Remove gloves and wash your hands

You can bring your containers to Steady Collective during outreach hours or take them to the Buncombe County Transfer Station (190 Hominy Creek Road).

Steady Collective has regular syringe pick-up events. Studies show needle litter to be less prevalent near community syringe access programs.

Steady Collective maintains outdoor syringe collection units in Buncombe county.

These units were made and installed by Asheville Greenworks. If you find individual syringes near any of these containers just deposit them in the top and Steady will pick them up. These containers have kept thousands of used syringes off the ground and out of local waterways. Check this Collection Container Map to find the drop off point nearest to you.

Why do we need harm reduction programs here?

According to the NC Department of Health and Human Services, Buncombe county has one of the highest unintentional overdose death rates in the state (While the 2019 statewide rate per 100,000 residents was 17.2, Buncombe county's rate was 32.5). In the last decade, the highest rate of meth-related deaths in the state occurred in Buncombe county. Hospitalizations and surgeries to treat infective endocarditis, an infection of one or more heart valves often caused by injecting with used needles, have increased tenfold in North Carolina.

Why is Steady uniquely suited to do this work?

Evidence shows that established community-based syringe access programs like Steady Collective prevent disease, overdose, and injection-related injuries. There is also research that confirms that people who participate in these kinds of syringe access programs are more likely to engage with local healthcare systems and enter into treatment for substance use.

Steady is not JUST a syringe access program.

We are committed to the principles of harm reduction. We provide non-judgmental, non-coercive services and resources and create the lowest possible barriers to care. We believe that no one should be denied their human rights based on drug use. We advocate for drug users and their families in hospitals, jails, treatment facilities, and city hall.

What does Steady do for someone looking for treatment?

Steady maintains a list of evidence-based treatment resources. If participants ask, we provide referrals to trusted providers from that list. If you are interested in being included as a resource for our participants, contact us.

Can I come by and observe a distribution day?


We are often asked by students, medical professionals, journalists, and interested community members if they can come by and watch what we do or interview participants. We take the anonymity and dignity of Steady's participants very seriously. You must fill out a volunteer application, attend a volunteer training, and sign a confidentiality agreement before coming to a distribution day if you are not a participant in our program. On occasion, we will allow staff and volunteers from other established syringe access programs to visit our sites while distribution is happening.