Akif Çağatay Kılıç, The Then Minister of Youth and Sports, met the National Sportsmen competing in the 23rd Summer Deaflympics which would be held in Samsun.
The meeting was held with the participation of Osman Kaymak, Governor of Samsun, Yusuf Ziya Yilmaz, Mayor of Samsun Metropolitan Municipality, Prof. Dr. Sait Bilgiç, Rector of Ondokuz Mayıs University and Samsun protocol.
Mr. Kılıç said in a speech addressed to sportsmen: "You do not have a minus, in fact you have pluses. The important thing is to represent our flag you carry on your chest in the best way and to assume the responsibility for the future of your country. In my eyes you are all brothers with medals. "
Mr. Kılıç stated that the number of the medals was not important in the 23rd Summer Deaflympics, and he said: "I hope that you will represent our country in the best possible way in the 23rd Summer Deaflympics and that you will gain more medals the number of which was 35 in the previous Olympics. Do not force yourself for the numbers. The important thing is to give the best fight. One of the aims of these sports organizations, maybe the most important one, is to bring you together. We will host more than 5,000 foreign guests including 3,200 sportsmen from other countries and their delegations. The purpose here is to make acquaintances, to become together, and to establish friendships in the later years of your life. "
Mr. Kılıç wished the sportsmen to make fun out of the period they were in Samsun, and he said:
"The effort you put forth is a different endeavor. You do not have a minus, in fact you have pluses. I can see how great your effort is. What would I do if I couldn't hear you right now? There are things we are accustomed to in the everyday flow of life. Maybe that's why we use the term "normal". These are the things we are used to, but they can be lost in our lives at any moment. How does life continue after it? So we see how great the effort you put forth is. So I say to you to enjoy the moment. You have already won. "
Mr. Kılıç remarked that the English Team came to Samsun with their own means in order to compete in the 23rd Summer Deaflympics without the support of the British Government. He said: "British sportsmen launched a campaign. Hundred thousand pounds were required to be collected so that they could come here. They would not be able to come to Samsun if they had not managed to raise the money. One week before they came to Turkey for the games they announced this from social media; 'Yes we have collected hundred thousand pounds and we can go' they said. My dear friends, hundred thousand pounds equal to four hundred thousand Turkish liras when calculated through current rates. I do not even mention the financial resources that have been spent for you by the Turkish Government. We give all of the resources to you so that you can come here, do your sport, improve yourself and integrate more effectively with the world. We are happy to provide such opportunity. We want one thing; Benefit from your opportunities very well, know their value. "
Pointing out that Turkish sportsmen have much more opportunities than the sportsmen from other countries, Çağatay Kılıç said, "Benefit from these opportunities effectively. Maybe we are not as rich as other countries. I mean in the sense of financial resources. As far as Great Britain is concerned, they have obtained numerous incomes from their past investments in different countries, from the oil platforms of the northern sea, through companies and financial power, but their national team of Deaflympics had to find 100,000 pounds through a campaign in order to come to Turkey. Nothing is perfect, perfection is Allah's attribution. What is important is the effort that has been made and the struggle for doing something important. "
Mr. Çağatay Kılıç remarked that they would organize a different opening ceremony for the games. He stated: "We will hold the opening ceremony in our new stadium. There will be a light show and fireworks. It is a great organization held in our country. There will certainly be some shortcomings. The important thing is to represent our flag you carry on your chest in the best way and to assume the responsibility for the future of your country. In my eyes all of you are brothers with medals. You really did something very important. I hope you will show your efforts much better in Samsun, I wish you success in games. "
After the speech, Mr. Kılıç and protocol members took a souvenir photo with sportsmen.