Dera is compassionate, selfless, gentle and kind. She is someone who would go out of her way to help others, even when it is of great inconvenience to her. She believes that a purpose worth living for is that which is greater than you. For only then can untapped possibilities emerge and the riches of the soul be poured out. One virtue she was raised with is that when you’re strong, you ought to bear the challenges of the weak, and where necessary, place their needs above oneself. The last child in a family of eight, Dera was born on a sunny afternoon by 3pm in Onitsha eastern Nigeria. Having her at 45 years, her mother was told it was something unthinkable. Her mother often jokes of how Dera was named; just as Dera was born, after being placed in her mother’s arms, she looked into her eyes and exclaimed “Oderana odego” (whatever God writes must come to pass). Her name Odera, means “God has written it”. Dera’s future ambition is to become a music composer, singer/songwriter. After finishing High School, instead of studying Nursing like she was expected to, Dera decided to choose music. She believes that through music, she can tell a story… a story that can change lives.
The first thing you notice about Dera is her infectious smile, her motherly instincts and her propensity to rush to the aid of others. She is the one that would give her umbrella to a stranger and walk in the rain. Her passion, strength, dependability and compassion make her stand out. But her determination to forge through all the challenges she faced in life to follow her dreams are most memorable. Dera is no stranger to obstacles and challenges, her passion to be a voice for youth empowerment has only grown greater over the years. Those who need a voice can be found in the most obvious places as well as the most unlikely places; sometimes it doesn’t take so much to succor those whose voice lack the strength, will, inspiration and opportunities to attain a life of purpose.