Christian Aid's door-to-door fundraising week, which is being promoted with a TV and press advertising campaign, aims to top the £14.3m it raised last year.
The campaign 'denounces' support for the developing world, to highlight the danger of creating dependency through quick-fix approaches to tackling poverty.
The print ad, featuring a woman in India called Jamila, carries the headline: "Supporting people in the Third World is wrong". It urges people to help Jamila "enjoy the self-respect that comes from standing on her own two feet" by providing her with the right tools.
The TV ads feature a puppet gradually breaking free of his strings and then installing a water tap for his community.
Kate Phillips, external relations director at Christian Aid, said: "We hope these adverts will encourage people to give to Christian Aid in the realisation that their donation can allow thousands of people to take control of their own lives."
Celebrities including Coronation Street actress Suranne Jones and comedian Alexei Sayle are backing the week, which starts on 9 May.