Fort S.A.N.D. FAQs

We answer our most commonly received questions below!

What does Fort S.A.N.D. mean?

  • S.A.N.D. is an acronym which stands for Savior, Almighty, Never-Failing, Deliverer, just a few characteristics of God displayed in 2 Samuel 22:2, which reads, “The Lord is my Rock, my Fortress and my Deliverer.” When we envisioned a theme for Children’s Ministry at UCCD, we wanted something that fit in with our surroundings in the UAE and thought of all the forts dotting the desert. We wanted the children of UCCD to think of God and His love for His people and the truths of His gospel every time they saw the land around them.

Who takes care of my children while I’m in class or in church?

  • Fort SAND classes are taught by church members who have volunteered to serve the congregation in this way. Volunteers attend a training in the beginning of the school year, and there are always at least two teachers for each Friday class.

How are the classes split up?

  • Students are grouped according to age. In addition to age, they are also grouped according to gender from the ages of 7-11.

What will my child learn about on Fridays?

  • The Gospel, of course! We believe that it is crucial for children to be told the truth of the saving work of Christ, even from a young age. (Ephesians 6:4) During Friday Foundations we will be working through an overview of the Bible with all of the kids and during the Main Service we will be learning about different aspects of 'Systematic Theology', that is, we will be answering questions such as 'How can I know what God is like?' and 'What is God's love for His people like?' from the Bible.

What are drop-off and pick-up times?

  • Children can be dropped off before Friday Foundations Classes (9:15am - 9:30am) or before Friday service (10:15am - 10:30am). We ask that parents pick-up their children either after Friday Foundations (around 10:30am) or after the service (around 12:15pm). We will allow children to join their class until 11am. After 11am, parents need to bring their kid(s) into Maranatha Hall upstairs. 

What’s the Friday schedule for kids?

  • All children's ministry is downstairs. Friday Foundations in the South Wing at 9:30am, with registration for 0-3 year olds opposite the Bible Society bookshop and 4+ next to the Friday Foundations classrooms near the church office. At 10:30am, a new session will start with Bible Time, memory verses, songs, games to cement what they are learning and crafts.

What should my child bring?

  • For babies (0-14 months) please bring a snack. For all other ages, please do not bring any food for them, however a water bottle is allowed.
  • For 4+ children, bring a Bible with their name clearly written inside.
  • For all children we strongly discourage bringing toys or other items from home as this can be disruptive to the class.

What else happens during the week?

  • On Thursday nights from 7pm - 8pm during Thursday Night Bible Study, we have DIG Team for kids aged 5 - 11, where they will learn from the Word of God. If you have a child older than 11, consider our Youth Group which meets upstairs on Thursday nights.

What if I have a child with special needs?

  • Gate 139 is the ministry for special needs children at Fort S.A.N.D. In Gate 139 our goal is to partner with parents of children with special needs as they raise their children in the knowledge and instruction of the Lord.
  • Gate 139 kids will attend large group worship time with all of the age 4-11 kids and then will spend the remaining part of the service in a class designed just for them where they will have an opportunity to work through the passage for the day in a one-to-one setting. They'll hear Bible truth, sing Bible truth and play games and to crafts to help them apply Bible truth to their hearts.
  • If you have a child who you think would benefit from this ministry, please contact us to talk about your child's needs and how we can best minister to them.

Can I stay with my child during the class?

  • If it’s your child’s first time at Fort SAND, you can request for a Visitor’s name tag from Registration to help ease them into a new environment. After the first time, however, we would suggest that you let the child get accustomed to sitting in class with other kids their age apart from their parent(s).
  • Click here to download a helpful article that can help with Separation Anxiety.

How are children protected in Fort S.A.N.D.?

  • We take the safety of all children left in our care seriously. Our Child Protection Policy has been approved by the church Elders and it is read, understood and agreed to by all volunteers. The principles from this document are also implemented in the classrooms. Click here to read our Child Protection Policy.

I have more questions! Who can I contact?

  • If you have more questions, please send us an email at and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can!

If you'd like to hear some songs we sing at Fort SAND, please click here.