Adult education programs can be organized by both private and public training centres owned and funded either privately or by local and state authorities. A great majority of these centres charge student fees as a substantial contribution to their running costs. The funding of certain programmes may be provided by donors or by allocated funds in the State Budget. The Ministry of Labour and Social Policy is a responsible institution for allocation finances in the State Budget for implementation of adult education training programmes (Article 7 of the Law on Adult Education).
The State Budget lines for the financing of the adult education also include finances for operational costs of the workers' universities. According to the Law on Open Civic Universities for Lifelong Learning (Article 21) the workers' universities must be transformed into open universities for lifelong learning. Subsequently, they will fall under the responsibility of the municipalities who will provide funding for their operational costs. The legislation also leaves the possibility for the workers' universities to be transformed in private institutions for adult education services by which they will terminate financial dependence from the State or Municipal Budget
Public funding of Operating Plan for Active Programmes and Measures for Employment is channelled through the Employment State Agency of the Republic of Macedonia (ESARM). It is complemented by EU financial assistance (IPA) and funds raised by the ESARM itself. The distribution of the money into specific training-related programs follows an annual plan, based on expressed needs and interests. The ESARM is responsible for implementation of the needs assessment activities. Programmes in the recent years included training and support to single mothers, victims of domestic violence, Roma, youth under 27, long-term unemployed. In terms of the programmes’ objectives, they encompassed training for self-employment, in-service-training in companies, training for basic and advanced IT skills, employment preparation training, etc. The training offered in many programmes is a direct response to employer needs. Whilst addressing direct business sector skills constraints and demands, the delivery of many programs as parts of fixed-term projects and measures or their dependence on external funds affect adversely their sustainability. The Per Program Funding varies between approximately 26,000 USD (training for under 29-year-olds at request of a textile industry employer) to 316,000 USD (training in advanced IT skills), and the costs per user vary from free (for 1,009 trainees in business start-up training program) to 1,755 USD (for 112 trainees in training in advanced IT skills).
Some of the costs for adult education are covered through donor-funded programs. The EU, through IPA, provides funds for implementation of adult training. The programmes funded by donors are mainly targeting at specific populations or at specific issues. Those targeting specific populations are mainly focused on the unemployed individuals, job-seekers, Roma, women, rural populations. The programmes that are developed and funded as an instrument tackling specific issues are focused mainly on teacher professional development and mobility, the development of curricula, purchasing equipment, etc. These two approaches depend on the priorities in the programme schemes of the donors.