BACKGROUND: Active support is an effective intervention to support engagement of residents with intellectual disability in group homes. This survey explored resident characteristics of the people supported by organisations implementing active support, the provision of active support, its procedures and systems, and resident engagement in meaningful activity and relationships. METHOD: Information was collected through questionnaires and direct observation of 33 group homes from 6 organisations in Victoria, Australia, with a 5-10-year history of implementing active support. RESULTS: Residents with lower support needs were engaged with little staff contact or assistance. Use of active support systems and structures was mixed. Only one organisation consistently provided good active support. CONCLUSIONS: Administrative systems and structures are not sufficient to change staff interaction and thus resident experience. Shared supported accommodation services may represent an inefficient use of resources for more able residents, as staff resources are not maximised to support for resident engagement.