URUMQI, Oct. 14 (Xinhua) -- Massage, painting, calligraphy, footbath and card games -- these are daily activities at a daycare center for the elderly in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
"I come here four to five times a week, mostly with my neighbors," said Nurnisa Nejmidin, a 71-year-old native of Korla City in Xinjiang.
The Korla-Hebei Elderly Daycare Center, a stone's throw from Nurnisa Nejmidin's home, was built under a "pairing assistance" program, through which financial, technical and talent support have been channeled to Xinjiang from other regions of China.
With a total investment of 11.5 million yuan (about 1.78 million U.S. dollars), the center houses rehabilitation rooms, a library, an art room, a room for playing chess and card games, a nursing center and other facilities.
"Besides regular services, we also provide door-to-door services for the elderly through a smart home-based care platform," said Li Yunlei, director of the platform.
So far, the profiles of more than 16,500 senior citizens have been input into the system and 8,455 visits have been conducted, Li said.
"The senior citizens only need to call up to make an appointment, and the platform will take orders automatically. The community workers will then provide services accordingly," he added.
Three such daycare centers, as well as 11 other nursing homes, have been built in Korla, which can help meet the needs of all the elderly in the city, said Qin Guangqi, deputy director of the city's civil affairs bureau, adding that the popularity of various forms of elderly care institutions reflects the change in people's lifestyle.
"In the past, most people here used to live with their parents even after growing up. However, as more residents started to work in other cities and live apart from their parents, daycare homes have emerged as an effective option offering more choices for the elderly to spend their twilight years," Qin said.