Rachem Wellness Founders
From left: Moniqué Bekker (BCur, MCur) NWU, Idonette van Zyl (MSc. Dietetics) NWU, Vicky de Beer (B. Occupational Therapy) UOFS, Alma le Roux (MBChB) UP.
“On a sunny winter’s day in June of 2018, I (Alma) was contemplating what my career as a doctor would look like in the future. As I was daydreaming, my mind was suddenly overcome by an idea. Almost instantaneously, an intense desire for this idea to become a reality, was conceived in my heart.
I could envision a beautiful multidisciplinary practice, where people felt welcome, safe, and even loved. It has always been my goal to reach and help women specifically. My hope for this dream was that women, and everyone who enters this place, would find what they were looking for, even if it was only a few minutes of reprieve from the demands of their everyday lives.
Whilst being lost in these thoughts, I had the intense urge to name this imaginary place. The word that felt suitable and that I wanted to work with, was ‘compassion’. I searched for the Hebrew word, and found ‘rachem’. In the Hebrew language the root word of ‘rachem’ has a two-folded meaning; it means both “to have compassion”, and “uterus”.
It was no small wonder when later, a friend of mine showed me a book where the Biblical principles of motherhood was studied in depth. It started off with explaining the function of the uterus for the unborn baby. I was stunned at what this list included: the uterus is a blessing, a haven for miracles, a weapon against the work of the enemy, a sphere of influence, a place of dependency, a birthplace of destinies, a support and nurturing structure, a place which brings forth God’s reward and most significantly to me, it is also defined as a seat of compassion!
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the definition of compassion is the “sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it”. This definition resonates with my vision of this wellness centre on a profound level.
For the next few months, I did nothing but allow this concept of a medical centre that would be the embodiment of compassion to quietly grow. Towards the end of 2018, I actively started pursuing the dream.
My path crossed with Idonette in November 2018. Idonette has harboured a desire for a similar multi-disciplinary practice for a long time. Our individual dreams echoed with one another and ever since we first met, Idonette and her husband, Cilliers, have played a very supportive and significant role in raising up Rachem Wellness. Moniqùe and Vicky joined us early in 2019, and for the next several months we dreamed, planned, talked, brainstormed, laughed, cried, prayed, encouraged, drank coffee, and worked hard to find and put the pieces together to create a path that would lead us to Rachem Wellness. All the while God was orchestrating everything perfectly from behind the scenes. After very extensive searching, we finally found the perfect property, and by October 2019, the purchase was finalised.
In the meantime, Moniqùe got pregnant with her fourth child, and she decided to take a step back and focus on her family. Therefore, she decided not to pursue her dream of a Birthing centre just yet.
Vicky and her husband were presented with job opportunities in Windhoek; they moved there in January 2020. Even though Vicky and Moniqùe are not working at Rachem Wellness now, they will forever hold a very special place in its foundation.
We started the renovating process of the building on our property in February 2020. We were well on our way with this process when Covid-19 struck our country and the lockdown was announced. After a seven-week interruption, we could thankfully continue the renovation process.
At the time of me writing this, the end product is almost in sight. Idonette, Moniqùe, and Vicky: I will always remember you as dear friends, and strong Godly women who were sent my way to help bring Rachem Wellness to fulfilment. My heart feels warm, humbled and very thankful to have had you on this journey with me.
I also want to extend my deepest love and gratitude to my dear husband, Christo. Without your full unwavering support, understanding and commitment, this project would not have been possible.
On a personal level, this has been a faith walk unlike anything I’ve ever embarked on. I want to give all the honour and glory to my Heavenly Father, the author and giver of all good things.”
~ Alma le Roux
The fig in our logo
The fig has been a symbol of great significance to the founders of Rachem. In a literal sense, figs are some of the most nutritious fruits available. A fig is a soft fruit which to us, correlates with the essence of womanhood. The shape of a fig closely resembles that of the uterus which also increased the significance of the fig as a symbol for us. If ever there was a fruit that signifies compassion, it would undoubtedly be the humble fig.
Figs and fig trees have many Biblical references:
- Fig trees were the only trees mentioned by name in the Garden of Eden.
- Figs were one of the seven foods deliberately mentioned to be present in the promised land.
- The condition of the fig tree was used as a barometer for the spiritual condition of the nation of Israel. It signified the nation to be healthy, at peace and prosperous or the contrary thereof.
- Throughout the Bible the fig tree is a symbol of wellbeing and security.
Fig trees are able to bear fruit twice a year. We feel that is significant as well, because as humans, the spiritual ‘fruit’ we bear is a reflection of our inner wellbeing.
Fig trees are strong and resilient trees, they provide ample shade for those who find refuge below it. A fig tree can be a place of rest, refreshment, and nourishment when it is in fruit. May Rachem Wellness be that to anyone who is unwell and weary.